UAE has strong ability to sustain growth: Lubna

ABU DHABI — The UAE Minister of Foreign Trade Shaikha Lubna Al Qasimi has underlined the country’s strong ability to develop the economy and continue to support different economic sectors and strengthen its advanced commercial standing across the globe.

Shaikha Lubna said that that the success of the government’s strategy of nurturing an open economy, promoting a free market, and guaranteeing fair competition has allowed the UAE economy to remain as one of the top economies of the Middle East amid the global recession. These strategies and policies, she added, have contributed towards increasing global confidence in the UAE’s economy and succeeded in attracting large foreign direct investments.

Addressing the ministry of foreign trade’s annual meeting for foreign business councils and groups, Shaikha Lubna said the UAE will continue to offer various incentives to guarantee that it remains one of the most business-friendly destinations in the world. She also pointed out some of the advantages the UAE possesses such as stability, advanced economic laws, the presence of tens of free trade areas, as well as the implementation of a clear strategy for growth and development for the next years that will guarantee the UAE’s investment attractiveness globally.

The meeting was organised to exchange thoughts and ideas about the best means by which to boost growth and achieve commercial and investment prosperity.

The foreign trade minister said that “although doing business in a foreign land entails a lot of time, money and effort, the decision taken by foreign businessmen to choose the UAE as an investment partner for growth is the right decision” in light of the UAE’s achievements and successes in all sectors coupled with its strong ability to increase growth in the future.

She invited the foreign business councils to increase their contributions towards achieving economic success and development in the UAE through exploring more investment opportunities in the local market especially in the non-oil sectors such as renewable energy.

Shaikha Lubna underlined the increase in the percentage of non-oil sectors contribution to GDP, which reflects the success of the UAE’s diversification strategy, pointing out that non-oil sectors’ contribution to GDP has reached 71 per cent in 2009, up from around 63 per cent in 2008.

She affirmed that the UAE will continue its adoption and execution of a trade policy framework that is attuned to its regional and international obligations whilst also being in line with the visions and strategic priorities of the government’s wise vision to build a diverse and sustainable economy and attain a unique global standing, pointing out to the release, a few days ago, of the “2010 UAE Trade Policy Review” which sets a new global precedent as no World Trade Organisation (WTO) member state has ever conducted and released a voluntary review showcasing its trade policy outside of the framework of the current trade policy review mechanism before.

Shaikha Lubna also added that the WTO commended the UAE’s trade policy following the first Trade Policy Review which was conducted in 2006, and affirmed that the UAE’s open and diversified economy, and the role of commerce in the country’s economic growth, coupled with its growing economic capacity, have placed the state at an advanced global multi-party commercial order.

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