Annual Investment Meeting to be held in Dubai next April under theme ‘Partnerships for Sustainable Development & Inclusive Growth’
UAE is second largest Foreign Direct Investment destination in MENA region
UAE’s inbound FDI reached USD 9 billion in 2016
The Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) will take place at the Dubai World Trade Centre from April 9 to 11, 2018 with the participation of elite leaders and decision makers and high-level local, regional and international government officials.
The annual forum is one of the leading regional events on foreign direct investments (FDI) and is organized by the UAE Ministry of Economy under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. It is expected to attract more than 20,000 investors and visitors from various developed and emerging markets this year and will adopt the theme ‘Partnerships for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development.
AIM is a leading platform for strengthening the UAE’s role as a distinctive investment destination. In the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business for 2018, the UAE ranked 21 out of 190 countries in Ease of Doing Business, up by five levels from 26th in the 2017 report.
Cumulative FDI to the UAE increased to USD117.9 billion by the end of 2016 from around USD109 billion by the end of 2015, at a growth rate of 8.2 per cent. The rise was supported by higher investments in manufacturing and other heavy industries, according to recent reports.
H.E. Engr. Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori, UAE Minister of Economy said: "FDI is instrumental to achieving sustainable economic growth. We in the UAE are constantly adopting policies and structures that will ultimately provide us with a suitable environment for attracting FDI and retaining its positive impact to attain the desired results.”
H.E. Engr. Al Mansoori noted that it is important for countries to develop appropriate policies and frameworks for taking the best advantage of inward FDIs to support their development objectives.
According to the 2017 Global Investment Report published by the UN Council on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the UAE was the 11th largest FDI recipient in Asia. Its main investors are from the UK, the US and India. After having declined in 2009, FDI inflows recovered in 2016, when the UAE attracted around USD 8.9 billion to surpass the 2015 figure by around 2.2 per cent primarily due to the political and economic stability of the country. FDI is mainly concentrated in the retail/wholesale trading, real estate, financial services, insurance, and manufacturing sectors.
H.E. the Minister added: "The world today is highly interdependent, with any side affecting and affected by what is happening in any other part. We face common challenges which we can overcome through mutual efforts and synergy between governments and the private sector which will enable us to build a future that benefits all people worldwide, allowing them to enjoy a life of security, stability, and well-being."
With its emphasis on linking developed and emerging markets under the theme ‘Partnerships for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development,’ the 8th edition of the Annual Investment Meeting will be dedicated to discovering how such partnerships between developed and emerging markets can be utilized to strengthen mutual objectives through responsible FDI and the cooperative creation of solutions for today’s problems. It will also explore how to ensure that future generations have the ability to live in a thriving and socially and economically responsible world abundant with resources and opportunities for all.
The UAE is an attractive destination for foreign direct investments due to several reasons, such as the readiness and efficiency of its infrastructure and its highly developed land, sea and air transportation which have contributed to the successful establishment of 31 diversified and specialized free trade zones; the absence of restrictions to the movement of capital whether into or from the local markets; a strong banking sector; modern legislation that supports the diversification of the economy; a well-regulated business environment; high purchasing power; and a highly skilled multicultural workforce. These all give the UAE a regional advantage as a major destination for foreign direct investment.
AIM is an international conference and exhibition that promotes cross-border investment flow to achieve sustainable global economic growth. It is participated in by ministers and senior government officials, investment promotion agencies, government bodies, chambers of commerce and industries, business councils, business groups, private sector organisations, investors, banks and financial institutions, and other stakeholders.
The 2018 edition will feature various industry projects and services catering to the investment growth of participating regions throughout its three-day run. It will focus on promoting FDIs and effective ways to attract investors to various economic sectors.
Since its inception in 2011, AIM has brought together thousands of exhibitors and visitors to network, promote projects and attract investments to the various participating countries. The exhibition gives opportunities for governments and private organisations to launch and pitch their projects to a vastly diverse audience. In 2017, AIM attracted more than 19,000 visitors and witnessed the participation of 535 exhibitors from 141 countries.
Nations such as China, Egypt, India, Morocco, Nigeria, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine, the UK and the USA chose AIM 2017 as a platform for enhancing investment opportunities in their respective countries and regions.