UAE outpaces top global economies in nurturing SMEs, startups

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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The UAE has secured first in the region and fourth position across the world in the latest Global Entrepreneurship Index (GEI), escalating from its fifth place in the 2019 report.

The new index report shows that the UAE has outpaced many global economies including the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, European Union countries, China, Japan and South Korea in the overall rankings of the index.

The country has also achieved rankings of many sub-indicators including the second position for the national governments’ response to COVID-19 lockdowns and on the impact on the entrepreneurial sector.

The UAE has surpassed the UK, the US, Spain, Austria and Germany in the general physical infrastructure and services indicator access by scoring 7.3 out of 10. It also gained a similar score on cultural, social norms and society support.

Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri
Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri
UAE Minister of Economy

“The achievement is a matter of great pride, which confirms the soundness of the approach and the strength of the economic policies pursued by the UAE, with the support and guidance of its wise leadership. The UAE has world-leading experience in supporting and organizing the entrepreneurship sector, in building an integrated system to support and incubate entrepreneurial projects, accelerate their growth, and developing initiatives and programs that make it a growth engine and a major contributor to our non-oil GDP.” 

The UAE is planning to create an integrated framework to support national entrepreneurship, drive the development of the SME sector and create an environment capable of offering comprehensive and sustainable support for entrepreneurs in the country with an aim to bring ease in doing business, access to finance, increasing demand, innovation and digital transformation, says Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of State for Entrepreneurship and SMEs.

The GEI also ranked the UAE high in the research and development section of transference, along with Norway and Italy and ahead of Germany, the US, the UK, Sweden and South Korea.

The index is one of the indicators of the UAE Vision 2021 national agenda, under the axis of ‘Competitive Knowledge-Economy,’ supervised by the Ministry of Economy, with the contribution of a national team and with the participation of many stakeholders in the country.