Recent developments and plans announced by Dubai’s government highlight the emirate’s promising trajectory towards becoming a “future-proof global business capital” according to ICAEW, an accountancy and finance body.
The plans, which include a geo-economic map for the city, the first virtual commercial city in the region, free economic and creative zones in universities, and Dubai International Financial Center’s (DIFC) expansion plan, aim to accelerate the development of Dubai’s business landscape.
“The UAE economy has been adapting well to a prolonged decline in oil prices since 2014. As we said in our latest Economic Insight report, the non-oil sector – which represents almost 70% of the UAE’s economy – was the key growth driver for the country’s economy in 2018,” said Michael Armstrong FCA, ICAEW Regional Director for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA). “Continued improvements in strengthening non-oil revenue, advancing to a competitive knowledge-based economy, instilling business confidence, and facilitating doing business will help achieve the UAE’s 2021 goals.”
Armstrong added that Dubai’s approach to change is “proactive rather than reactive”, which has been a key factor in the emirate’s success. “This will ensure it is fit and ready to compete in a digital world. Changes, driven by a range of factors, but most significantly technology, will transform all aspects of business and society in the coming years. Governments across the globe are heavily involved in digital transformation initiatives aimed at creating economies better suited to a world of rapid digitalization,” Armstrong said.
ICAEW pointed out that Dubai is investing in innovations, such as the planned transformation of public and private universities into free zones that allow students to carry out business and creative activities, and the establishment of the first virtual commercial city in the region. “This makes it clear Dubai is embracing digital transformation. These measures, alongside the development of DIFC 2.0, a move that further supports growth for the regional financial services landscape, will definitely facilitate Dubai’s journey towards unparalleled achievement and success,” Armstrong added.
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