Dubai Free Zones Council explores strategic initiatives to support startups & SMEs

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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The Dubai Free Zones Council (DFZ Council) has discussed the strategic initiatives that support Dubai-based startups and SMEs in collaboration with business accelerators to strengthen the emirate’s status as a preferred destination for foreign direct investment and innovation.

They explored the strategic initiatives during the 18th meeting of the DFZ Council, which was headed by its chairman HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum. The council chairman praised the importance of Dubai’s free zones in developing a dynamic trade corridor with global markets and attracting foreign direct investments to Dubai.

Sheikh Ahmed emphasized that Dubai’s free zones have shown its outstanding economic model by creating a highly flexible environment through value-added and incentivized activities. He stated that the competitiveness of Dubai’s free zones has earned the trust of the international business community.

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum
Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum
Chairman – DFZ Council

“The decision coincides with Dubai’s preparations to host Expo 2020 Dubai, the largest global event of its kind, as it will have a strong positive impact on attracting foreign direct investment. Our economy presents a real example in boosting the global business community’s confidence to invest due to its flexible and secure business environment, advanced and world-class infrastructure, and high quality of life that allows global talents and investors to consider it home. Our unique initiatives are the result of the future-proof vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to build a stable economy that adds value to investors. The wise leadership’s goal to enhance the economic, political, and social security in the UAE as well as the nation’s swift response to crises is expected to yield a significant return on investment.”

During the meeting, DFZ Council members indicated that recent UAE Cabinet decisions, such as resolution no.16 of 2020 concerning the determination of the positive list of economic sectors and activities eligible for foreign direct investment and the percentage of ownership, have improved the ease of setting up and doing business in the UAE, as well as the competitiveness of the national economy. The decisions also create a surge of attractive opportunities for talent, expertise, and innovative ideas from around the globe.

Furthermore, DFZ Council members reviewed the Business Accelerator Unit initiative, which conducts meetings with relevant entities, companies, and investors, to examine challenges and propose innovative solutions that support a diversified, sustainable economy. They also discussed the progress of the unified record, which intends to integrate open data into government services using the newest artificial intelligence technology, in accordance with Dubai’s position as the world’s smartest city.

Related: Ajman Free Zone joins with two new insurance firms to support its community