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Foreign investments flood Dubai

Foreign investments flood Dubai

Dubai - Ranking seventh worldwide in FDI, the city succeeded in attracting 247 new investment projects



By Staff Reporter

Published: Sat 1 Apr 2017, 10:21 PM

Last updated: Sun 2 Apr 2017, 12:29 AM

With an inflow of Dh25.5 billion in 2016, Dubai has succeeded in maintaining its position among the top 10 global cities in attracting foreign direct investment (FDI). That was a solid 27.5 per cent increase over the previous year, when it had booked Dh20 billion.
Ranking seventh worldwide in FDI, the city also succeeded in attracting 247 new investment projects, reaffirming its position as a preferred international investment destination, said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council.
According to the latest Dubai FDI Monitor report released by the Dubai Investment Development Agency, an agency of Dubai Economy and Financial Times fDi markets data, the emirate stood third behind London and Singapore in new investment initiatives in the past year.
Sami Al Qamzi, Director-General of Dubai Economy, said the emirate has continued to grow at a rate higher than that of the Gulf region and the world. Dubai's economy grew 2.7 per cent in 2016 while the growth expected in 2017 and 2018 is 3.2 per cent and 3.7 per cent, respectively.
Sheikh Hamdan said the sustained FDI inflow into Dubai underlines the strength of the local economy and its ability to create new opportunities for investors.
Strategic projects accounted for 60 per cent of new investment initiatives and 92 per cent of FDI inflows in 2016 as infrastructure, stability, and smart services - along with productivity and competitiveness in Dubai - enhanced global economic stability and growth while also supporting regional and international expansion of businesses.
Sheikh Hamdan pointed out that advanced technology projects in varied sectors, which constituted 73 per cent of total FDI projects, along with diversification in investment projects and the significant share of inflows in knowledge and innovation in Dubai, confirm the emirate's leadership as a hub for finance, business, trade and tourism.
Sheikh Hamdan said the report reinforces Dubai's position as a preferred FDI destination for the international investor community. Canada, the UK, France, Spain and the US were among the leading sources of capital. Together, the US, the UK, India, Germany and Italy accounted for 152 FDI projects, which was 59 per cent of the total.
The Crown Prince said it is a clear indication that investors in major industrialised countries are confident about choosing Dubai to expand their strategic investments into wider markets across the Middle East, Africa and South Asia.
Dubai's success in attracting a new wave of investments - as evident in the opening of a number of research, development and innovation centres for some of the world's leading companies in 2016 - is a remarkable achievement, he said. Research and development investment increased its share to 5 per cent in 2016 from one per cent in 2015 among new FDI projects in Dubai.
Start-up hub
Another notable aspect of FDI inflows was the emirate's success in attracting new investment into start-ups, particularly tech start-ups, Sheikh Hamdan said.
While medium and high technology enterprises - as defined by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) - accounted for 73 per cent of new investment projects in 2016, there were more than 100 start-ups and small enterprises with an annual turnover of less than $20 million, which underscores the growing importance of Dubai as an ideal starting point for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) seeking to grow and expand into markets overseas.
Eye on future
Sheikh Hamdan said Dubai's leading rankings are attributed to its success in adapting to global economic changes and in providing innovative services that support business growth and expansion, in addition to the focus of all government authorities and free zones on ease of doing business.
The Dubai FDI Monitor report stands testimony to Dubai's pioneering spirit in launching the first city-level initiative in the world to observe and analyse investment trends and achievements periodically to provide reliable data and services to investors worldwide, he said.
Sheikh Hamdan called for investing in the future and establishing plans and policies that would keep pace with the times and prepare qualified cadres to meet investor needs, which is essential to consolidating Dubai's leadership and FDI readiness, especially in economic sectors critical to meeting the UAE National Agenda and Dubai Plan 2021.
reporters@khaleejtimes.com
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