Special: Dubai primed to be global business hub

Dubai - Emirate among best cities equipped for sustained partnerships.

By Waheed Abbas

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Photo: Alamy
Photo: Alamy

Published: Sun 8 Nov 2020, 9:33 PM

Last updated: Mon 9 Nov 2020, 7:18 AM

Dubai is among the cities which are quick, capable and productive in responding to opportunities, say new reports.

The studies, released on the eve of UN World Cities Day, projected strong, positive and faster growth prospects for the emirate and also rated the city among the world’s top 10 to live in 2021.

While commenting on its city governance and real estate in a post-Covid-19 world, global real estate consultancy JLL said Dubai’s “tight governance arrangements create very strong coordination and clarity around responsibilities, a predictable investment system and the calibre of leadership to drive long-term agenda.”

It said the emirate is quick, capable and productive in responding to opportunities.

“Powers over land use and transport also mean they are far better equipped to enter into sustained partnerships with investors and developers,” it added.

Global bank HSBC said in a city report that Dubai’s major economic and business reforms have led to significant improvements in its economic competitiveness and status as a global hub.

“Business reforms are also supporting the city’s innovation ecosystem. Dubai’s global corridor capability remains stable,” it said.

Professor Greg Clark, author of the reports and global head of future cities and new industries at HSBC, said Middle East, North Africa and Turkey (Menat) is home to bustling cosmopolitan cities with extraordinary histories, and these five in particular are primed to set the standard as future global hubs.

“Their next chapter of growth will depend on how effectively they can work together as a network, and on the individual ability of their economies to drive climate and sustainability-oriented innovation, reinvented trade flows, and the pursuit of human health and happiness,” he said.

“The overarching aim of Dubai’s series of long-term plans is to accelerate the transition towards the innovation economy, more renewable sources of energy and low carbon transport options. A number of more specialised long-term plans support an overarching charter that sets out the government’s vision for the future of Dubai,” HSBC said in its city report.

Resonance Consultancy has also announced the world’s 100 top-performing cities in its annual World’s Best Cities Report, ranking Dubai at sixth, ahead of Singapore, Barcelona, Los Angeles and Madrid.

The study said Dubai’s outdoors clinched the emirate sixth position in overall ranking.

“The city offers outdoor experiences that ranks fifth-most in quality, and it hit the top 10 for both safety and weather, both at No. 8. All the better to chase thrills among Dubai’s plentiful extreme sport offerings. There’s skydiving over the city’s more fanciful developments, the Palm Islands and World Islands. There’s dune bashing in the desert, a high-octane way to experience the environment around the city. And Dubai has even pioneered the sport of sandboarding, which is exactly what it sounds like,” said Chris Fair, president and CEO of Resonance Consultancy.

“Dubai is a city of superlatives: you can ride the elevator to the top of the world’s tallest building for a bird’s-eye view, bet on the ponies at the world’s richest horse race and pose for photos in front of the world’s tallest choreographed fountains. These experiences are not by accident: the city reinvented itself yet again throughout the 2010s, growing from a sterile playground for a handful of ultra-rich Emiratis to an international tourism and business destination. That has helped to attract the second-highest proportion of foreign-born citizens of any city worldwide, and they’re a sharp crowd, ranking No. 16 for Educational Attainment globally,” it added.

— waheedabbas@khaleejtimes.com

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