Yesterday, the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED), in collaboration with the UAE Ministry of Economy, conducted the 2nd UAE Investment '&' Business Forum.
The Forum is part of the UAE's activities during Hannover Messe 2013. Twenty-four leading UAE public and private organisations are represented at this year's exhibition.
Abdullah Al Saleh, Representative of the UAE Ministry of Economy officially opened the Forum. by. Al Saleh was joined by Olaf Hoffman, Vice President of the Arab-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry, to welcome the Forum's attendees and urged stronger economic ties between the UAE and Germany.
International business leaders, decision-makers, investors, and members of the media attended the Forum. The attendees learned of the UAE Economic Vision 2021's benefits to national economy and companies doing business in the UAE. The UAE Vision 2021 advocates a competitive, resilient, diversified, sustainable, and knowledge-based economy.
Through speeches, presentations, and panel discussions, high-ranking representatives of the UAE's business community highlighted investment and business opportunities for German companies in the Emirates and shed light on areas of trade and industrial cooperation between the UAE and Germany. They informed the audience of the latest developments in the UAE economy, one of the region's most thriving and fastest-growing economies. German counterparts also discussed prospects of economic cooperation between the two countries.
Mohamed Omar Abdullah, Undersecretary of ADDED, delivered a keynote speech. He reviewed Abu Dhabi's efforts to create a diversified and sustainable knowledge-based economy. The Undersecretary stated this will enhance the global competitiveness of the Emirate and bring prosperity to its people. He discussed the advantages of the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 and the advantages that the Emirate, and the UAE in general, offer to international investors and business partners.
Olaf Lies, Minister of Economic Affairs, Labor, and Transport for the Federal State of Lower Saxony, also addressed the Forum. He focused on cooperation between Germany and the UAE; expressing his country's determination to develop stronger economic relations with the UAE.
A German Federal Minister of Economics and Technology representative called for stronger economic and technological cooperation in their address.
Other activities within the Forum included a panel discussion with Alexander Haex, KIZAD Vice President for Business Development; Ahmed Ali Suwaid, Deputy Marketing Director of Ras Al Khaimah Free Trade Zone; and Mohamed H. Al Qemzi, CEO of ZonesCorp, on the UAE economic zones and ways to access the UAE market. Mr. Mohamed Ebrahim Al Hosani, Director of Regional Development at the Western Region Development Council, gave a presentation entitled "Al Gharbia Investment Roadmap."
Attendees also heard from Aisha Al Sheikh Al Zaabi, Strategic Affairs Executive Director at the Abu Dhabi Quality and Control Council about "Raising Quality and Conformity Standards for Enhanced Investment" and Souad Al Housani, President of Nexus Business Services, on "Exploring Onshore Opportunities in the UAE". Engineer Suhail Al Ameri, Chief Executive Officer of SENAAT, was interviewed under the headline "Fast Track Investments for the Emirates Industrial Expansion."
The Forum ended with a discussion and Q'&'A session with Dr. Gerhard Haase, UAE Representative of Wintershall, as representative of German companies operating in the UAE. Haase praised the advantages that the UAE offers for businesses and stressed that German companies are interested in doing business in the UAE.
Dr. Gerhard M. Haase, Representative of Wintershall Middle East GmbH, Abu Dhabi said "The UAE offers a wide spectrum of investment opportunities for top quality companies, not only limited to the energy sector and especially for those planning for a long-term engagement in this country." The UAE is Germany's first trading partner in the Middle East, with bilateral trade increasing by 120 per cent between 2004 and 2011, from ?3.9 billion to approximately ?8.5 billion. More than 1,000 German companies operate in the UAE.