UAE strives to achieve fastest economic recovery in the world, minister says

Suneeti Ahuja Kohli, James Jose/Dubai
Filed on June 26, 2021
Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade, addresses the 39th Annual International Conference of The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (Dubai) Chapter NPIO on Saturday. KT Photo/Shihab

Newly launched economic plan designed to restore growth.

The pandemic crisis brought out the best in us in the UAE in terms of business resilience and foresightedness, said Dr Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, UAE, at the 39th Annual International Conference of ICAI in Dubai on Saturday.

“We are currently striving to achieve the fastest economic recovery in the world while also setting the path for doubling our economy in the next decade moving from Dh1.5 trillion economy to Dh3 trillion economy by 2030,” the minister said.

"The swift response to the pandemic situation has allowed us to kick-start yet another remarkable growth phase in the country's history by adopting a series of policies and reforms and announcing some fundamental changes to various systems.”

The newly launched economic plan, for instance, is designed to restore growth and outlines 33 major initiatives on policies that are designed to support and revive our vital economic activities and accelerate UAE’s transition to more flexible economic model.

During the early months of the pandemic, the UAE maintained a fine balance between ensuring people’s health and maintaining economic continuity. Economic stimulus packages exceeding $100 billion have been disbursed to alleviate Covid-19’s economic impact on the private sector and to enable them to continue their activities and operations.

The year 2020 will also be remembered as the year of historic reforms in the UAE. “The government introduced sweeping amendments, most notably making amendments to laws on bankruptcy of commercial companies, 100 per cent foreign ownership, commercial transactions, and decriminalisation of cheques,” said Dr Thani.

The minister also mentioned how the UAE has strengthened anti-money laundering systems, enhanced measures to support family-owned businesses and tourism sector and supported the circular economy. “These landmark reforms have established the country as welcoming and seen as a tolerant nation for talented people from various backgrounds,” he added.

The UAE’s swift response to the pandemic has helped it turn the tide faster than other countries. “By late 2020, we saw signs of strong recovery with economic activities picking up in some of the vital sectors like health sectors and retail, with hospitality too benefitting from pick up.

As a result of these efforts, the Central Bank of the UAE projected the real GDP growth of the UAE at 2.5 per cent in 2021 with non-oil GDP growing at 3.6 per cent. Meanwhile, in 2021 a full recovery is expected with overall real GDP increased by 3.5 per cent and non-oil GDP by 3.9 per cent,” Dr Thani said.

Bilateral ties with India

The economic relations between the UAE and India have expanded significantly over the past decades with bilateral exchange growing from $180 million in 1971 to about $70 billion in 2019.

The UAE is among the most preferred investment destinations for the Indian expatriate community, said the minister, adding, in 2019, around 6,000, Indian trademarks and 245 commercial companies were registered in the UAE.

The ties are expected to strengthen in the coming years. “We see the joint economic committee as one of the most important institutional mechanism available to two countries to discuss the entire spectrum of opportunities that can be explore to further bolster these ties. As both countries celebrate two respective milestones this year, the UAE its golden jubilee, and India entering its 75 years of independence, we must enhance our contribution to strengthening the trade and investment ties between the two nations,” Dr Thani added.

In addition, a fast-approaching Expo 2020 in Dubai also offers promising prospects for specialised professions and ambitious investors and entrepreneurs from India, concluded the minister.


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