Dubai tops in attracting FDI projects in cultural, creative industries; surpasses London, Paris, Berlin

Emirate’s cultural, creative sectors attracted Dh7.35 billion in foreign direct investment in 2022


Waheed Abbas

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Published: Sun 11 Jun 2023, 10:03 PM

Dubai attracted a record 451 projects in the cultural and creative industries in 2022, an impressive increase of 107.7 per cent from the previous year, surpassing major global cities such as London, Singapore, Paris, and Berlin.

According to the Dubai FDI Monitor report, greenfield FDI projects accounted for 76 per cent of the total projects.

The US, India, the UK, France and Switzerland emerged as the leading foreign direct investors in the emirate’s cultural and creative industries in terms of FDI projects, while the US, India, Switzerland, France and the UK topped the list in terms of FDI capital inflows.

Foreign direct investment (FDI) in Dubai’s cultural and creative industry jumped to Dh7.357 billion in 2022, ranking the city first in the Mena region and 12th globally, up from 14th place in 2021.

Foreign capital flows generated an estimated 12,368 jobs, positioning the emirate first in the region and sixth globally in job creation.

The emirate has been a magnet for FDI inflows. It further strengthened its position as a global destination for foreign direct investment (FDI), recording over 80 per cent increase in FDI inflows and creating over 13,500 jobs last year.

According to the data from the 2022 Financial Times ‘fDi Markets’ report released last month, the emirate retained its top spot for a second successive year, achieving 89.5 per cent growth in total announced FDI projects in 2022, while total FDI capital surged 80.3 per cent over the same period.

The total estimated FDI capital in Dubai reached Dh47 billion last year as compared to Dh26.07 billion in 2021 while an estimated 38,447 jobs were created in 2022 as against 24,932 jobs in the previous year. The city attracted a total of 1,173 FDI projects last year.

Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture and Arts Authority and Member of the Dubai Council, said the latest ranking embodies the emirate’s unique approach and reflects the strength and maturity of its infrastructure and its legal, legislative, creative and digital environment.

“The emirate attracts innovators and talented individuals worldwide, providing them with an enabling environment where innovative projects can flourish, ground-breaking ideas can be nurtured and ambitious concepts can be transformed into thriving economic ventures. Dubai achieves this by leveraging its unique cultural diversity and renowned status as a premier destination for living, working, and investing,” Sheikha Latifa said.


She added that Dubai is committed to establishing a sustainable development landscape that transcends the present and future, ultimately positioning itself as the global capital of the creative economy by 2026.

Helal Saeed Almarri, director-general of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism, said the No.1 global ranking in attracting FDI projects into the CCI sector also highlights Dubai’s commitment to build on and leverage its supportive environment, world-class infrastructure and a legislative system that stimulates the creative economy, attracting a new generation of global talents, investors and entrepreneurs.

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