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The changing face of UAE business

Last week’s announcement that private firms would no longer have to provide a Dh3,000 bank guarantee to recruit each new employee is just the latest of a series of measures aimed at transforming the UAE’s economy.

The packages announced this year are an indication that the objectives announced in a series of medium- and long-term visions are becoming reality.

The UAE Vision 2021 calls for the development of a competitive knowledge-based economy, and the announcement of 10-year visas for scientists, and investors and professionals in the medical, scientific, research and technical fields is an important step in attracting the human capital necessary to achieve this.

The Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 and the Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 further set out the ambitions for developing the UAE’s non-oil sector to create a diverse, forward-thinking, innovative business ecosystem.

The UAE is among the 10 most competitive countries in the world and our goal is to remain a top destination for ease of doing business, through an agile economy based on flexibility and openness. A strong economy drives us as a nation to be among the first and best.”

 – His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai

What is notable about the measures announced so far this year is how tightly focused they are on making business easier to conduct in the UAE — a country that is already ranked the 21st top nation on the World Bank’s latest Ease of Doing Business report.

Measures announced cut down on red tape, relax business ownership rules, reduce registration and operating costs. They make it easier — and cheaper — to recruit.

In addition, the support and encouragement for innovation and start-ups help drive a crucial sector of the economy. It’s estimated that small- and medium- enterprises (SMEs) contribute 40 per cent to Dubai’s GDP and employ 42 per cent of the workforce.

Many of the measures announced will disproportionately benefit SMEs, who do often suffer from low liquidity and do not usually have the resources to employ staff to deal exclusively with paperwork. Measures that benefit business tend to benefit SMEs even more.

The new economic initiatives and incentives cover ease of doing business, supporting new sectors, developing SMEs, stimulating tourism, developing local economy and creating jobs, so as to build a unique investment environment that enhances Abu Dhabi’s competitiveness.”

 – His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces

And it is clear that although the measures announced so far are wide-ranging, we will see further announcements in the future.

“I think the dialogue is continuing,” Suresh Kumar, President of the Indian Business and Professional Council [IBPC] of Dubai, said of the latest visa announcements in a telephone interview.

“They certainly want to revisit this in a few months’ time simply to see how much of an impact this has created.”

Source: Gulf News

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