Dubai’s virus response helps rapid business recovery, says Hamdan - GulfToday

Dubai’s virus response helps rapid business recovery, says Hamdan

Dubai Crown prince, Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum.

Staff Reporter, Gulf Today

Rapid response measures from the government and decisive adaptive changes in the face of COVID-19 have enabled Dubai to successfully contain the pandemic and maintain its robust economic growth, stated  Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council.

Sheikh Hamdan said the government adopted a set of new strategic approaches and amended policies to accelerate economic growth and reduce the cost of doing business, apart from offering stimulus packages to enhance business and investor confidence.

Sheikh Hamdan’s statements came during the launch of the half-yearly report on business movement issued by the Business Registration and Licensing (BRL) sector of Dubai Economy, which showed licensing activity surpassing pre-pandemic levels to record the highest growth rates in the history of Dubai.

A total of 31,000 licenses were issued during the first six months of 2021, a growth of 77 per cent compared to the same period in 2020 when 17,478 licenses were issued. The record growth can be attributed largely to measures taken to ensure business continuity and further simplify government procedures for businesses.

Picture used for illustrative purpose.

The full ownership option granted to foreign investors, which is a momentous step towards achieving the vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to attract foreign direct investment (FDI) into vital sectors and raise business competitiveness in line with Dubai’s goals for the next 50 years also contributed to improving investor confidence.

The strong growth of the business sector reflects Dubai’s ability to transform challenges into achievements, in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, and his conviction that successful crisis management creates opportunities, said the Crown Prince. Mohammed bin Rashid’s vision has enabled Dubai to successfully overcome the repercussions of COVID-19, accelerate its recovery and reinforce its status as a global hub and the world’s best place to live and work.

Sheikh Hamdan noted that the international diversity of investors in Dubai validates the leadership’s focus on creating a growth-friendly and transparent investment environment across the UAE, marked by exceptional ease of doing business as well as security and safety.

He added, “The records we have achieved inspire us to continue working as one team to further enhance Dubai’s position as an incubator for entrepreneurs and a hub for global companies by identifying new opportunities for investors to accomplish their ambitions and building innovative development pathways to reinforce Dubai’s global leadership in all fields.”

According to Dubai Economy, Invest in Dubai, the integrated digital platform for establishing a business in Dubai, contributed to 25 percent of new licenses issued during the last five months. Together, the 25 percent of licenses account for 10,591 investors from 117 different nationalities. A total of 37 percent of the new investors that came through ‘Invest in Dubai’ belonged to the 26-35 age group while another 35 per cent were aged 36-45.

According to the latest report on new licenses from the ‘Business Map’ of Dubai Economy, Bur Dubai area accounted for the largest share (19,931) of new licenses issued in H1 2021 followed by Deira (11,008). The Hatta region accounted for 33 of the new licenses.

The report also pointed to a return and recovery of commercial activity in the areas of Naif and Al Ras, as new licenses in these two areas in H1 2021 (723) was the highest since 2016 and represented a 75 percent growth compared to the same period of 2020. The total number of operating licenses in Naif and Al Ras reached 4,833 in H1 2021, most of which (58 percent) are for commercial activities. The number of licenses issued in the two areas is the highest since 2016.

Sami Al Qamzi, Director-General of Dubai Economy, said the exceptional business licensing activity witnessed by Dubai during the first half of 2021 is a testament to the resilience and sustainability of the emirate’s economy.

“Dubai has been able to consolidate its economic fundamentals, progressive vision and ambition into a formidable force capable of withstanding challenges, maintaining a healthy growth rate, and achieving its desired transformation into a digital economy. The confidence demonstrated by investors and businesses in the growth potential of various sectors in the emirate and digital initiatives like ‘Invest in Dubai’ also underlines the vision of our leadership and the approach adopted by the government to further diversify the economy and integrate modern technologies to achieve customer happiness,” Al Qamzi explained

The half-yearly report of Dubai Economy showed a remarkable recovery in many vital activities and sectors during the first half of 2021. The Restaurants & Cafes category saw 1,153 new licenses, a growth of 92 percent compared to the same period last year. The Tourism sector welcomed 342 licenses that included 20 new hotels (a growth of 147 percent), in addition to various other activities, such as inbound and outbound trips. The sector is expected to see increased activity, especially with the rise in tourist numbers expected due to Dubai’s continued popularity as a major global destination and its profile as the venue for Expo this year.

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