Abu Dhabi expects $ 10 bn investment in industrial zones

Dec 30, 2003 01:00 AM

Abu Dhabi expects local and foreign investors to pump at least $ 10 bn into its emerging industrial zones as the emirate pushes ahead with its economic diversification programmes, its top economy official said.
Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, chairman of the Department of Economy, said around Dh 5 bn ($ 1.36 bn) had already been invested in the emirate's first major industrial city in Musaffah, just outside the capital.

Addressing businessmen and industrialists, he said Abu Dhabi has ambitious plans to stimulate its economy by attracting capital and building an industrial base that will expand its sources of income and offset volatile oil sales.
"I can tell you that all our plans, ideas and studies are gradually materialising into concrete projects," he said. "We are working on the development of five industrial zones which are expected to attract in excess of $ 10 bn. "Nearly Dh 5 bn has already been committed to the Abu Dhabi industrial city in Musaffah, although it has yet to be officially inaugurated. We are trying to facilitate procedures for investors to encourage them to place their funds here."

Sheikh Hamed spoke of a scheme to privatise factories owned by General Industry Corp and said return from the sale could be used in promoting manufacturing projects within a long-term industrialisation programme. He said a surge in oilfield services in the UAE has also prompted plans to set up a complex for companies involved in this sector.
"There is a study to set up a major complex for companies involved in the service of onshore and offshore oil and gas fields," he said. "This complex will be a nucleus for one of the largest industrial centres of its kind in the region. "We have nearly 530 companies involved in this field, with their turnover from maintenance and related services exceeding $ 1 bn a year," he added. "Our projections are that turnover will exceed $ 155 bn in the region in 15 years."

Sheikh Hamed said plans to lure foreign capital into industrial cities includemeasures to curb red-tape bureaucracy and ensure maximum security for investors.
"We want those investors to feel that they are placing their money in a safe and secure investment environment that will bring them maximum benefits," he said. "We are also trying to devise a base for accurate information on Abu Dhabi, especially updated economic indicators".

Source: GN Online
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