Dubai FDI highlights investment opportunities in food, tech sectors

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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The Dubai Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI), an agency of Dubai Economy, recently conducted two webinars to explore the opportunities in the food and agribusiness and technology sectors with potential investors from France and Switzerland.

Under the engagement strategy for 2020 of Dubai FDI, the webinars offered a platform for potential investors to explore foreign direct investment (FDI) opportunities in the sectors at a time when in-person trade has been disturbed by the coronavirus restrictions.

The UAE is France’s second-largest trade partner in the region with non-oil trade between the two countries was valued at $7.51 billion in 2019. The UAE is also one of the top importers of French products in especially in the food and beverage category, with demand for French products increasing by 50 percent over the 10 years up to 2019.

Over the ten years from 2010 to 2019 the non-oil trade between the UAE and Switzerland has surpassed $140.4 billion. Last year, the non-oil trade with Switzerland was valued at $17.7 billion marking an increase of 16.5 percent from 2018, also positioned Switzerland as the UAE’s fifth-largest trade partner.

Ibrahim Ahli
Ibrahim Ahli
Director-Investment Promotion Division
Dubai FDI

“Europe and the UAE have a strong bilateral partnership forged on trade, cultural and social exchange. Both the food & agribusiness and the technology sectors are strategically important for Dubai and present enormous opportunities for businesses and entrepreneurs from Europe. These webinars help us present investment opportunities so that we remain on track to economic recovery and growth.”

The Dubai Advantage exhibited to potential investors through the webinars was further strengthened by the presence of key Dubai Government entities related to each of the sectors in focus. The role of Dubai as an important gateway to the region’s emerging markets and a global hub for trade and investment was highlighted by the speakers.

For the webinar on the food and agribusiness sector representatives from Dubai Municipality (DM), Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority (Jafza) and Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) were present. The Dubai FDI highlighted the robust food and agriculture ecosystem the emirate has developed which has proven to be an effective solution to potential international supply-chain disruptions that occurred this year due to COVID-19 restrictions. Being a re-export center, Dubai provides great facilities for fresh produce and continues to focus on strategically targeted investments and policies to strengthen the ecosystem.

Smart Dubai, Dubai Future Foundation (DFF) and Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) were part of the webinar on opportunities in Dubai’s technology sector. Being a key player in implementing the emerging technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) and incubating high-technology startups, Dubai is also one of the countries in the world to make the best result out of artificial intelligence, robotics and machine learning, Blockchain, fintech and HealthIT. 

As per the data of Dubai FDI Monitor, the emirate recorded remarkable growth in FDI during the first six months of 2020, with 190 projects worth $3.27 billion. Nearly 53 percent of the investment received during the first half of the year was directed to medium and high technology investments, showing an increasing recognition among global investors that Dubai is an ideal city in which to make technology-related investments.