UAE’s DIFC reports 25% YOY growth in H1 2020

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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UAE’s global financial center, The Dubai International Financial Center (DIFC) has reported strong growth in the region’s financial sector with a 25 percent increase in the rate of company registration compared to the same period last year despite the impact of COVID-19.

DIFC announced that 310 new firms registered with the center during the first six months of this year bringing the number of active companies in the center to 2,584 companies.

Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum
Deputy Ruler of Dubai and
Dubai International Financial Center.

“The Dubai International Financial Centre’s ability to maintain a high momentum of growth despite the global repercussions of the pandemic reflects the Centre’s strong fundamentals and its high levels of preparedness to navigate unforeseen crises, supported by Dubai’s broader economic stability, adaptability and spirit of resilience.”

DIFC consistently listed registration of 52 companies per month during the first six months of this year with 66 companies in March and 88 companies in June. Currently, the center is home to 820 financial companies which is an increase of 22 percent compared to the same period last year and an increase of 11 percent compared to the fiscal year 2019.

Essa Kazim
Essa Kazim, Governor – DIFC

“The sustained growth delivered during the first half of 2020 is testament to the resilience of the Centre. The performance demonstrates the confidence the industry has in DIFC. As we enter a new period of digital transformation and operate within a ‘new normal’, we will continue to play a key role in contributing to the economy. DIFC will continue to demonstrate our forward-thinking approach to ensure we shape the future of finance, whilst attracting the world’s leading firms, inspirational startups and the best talent.”

Fin-tech firms companies continued to increase their share with 87 organizations specializing in financial technology joining the center during the first half of this year. DIFC also witnessed the joining of a number of prominent financial services companies, including Tata Asset Management, Samba Financial Group, Gazprom Bank, Vending Market, Brookfield Private Capital and Decimel Factor Middle East. Whereas, Ripple and Kovacs Middle East Limited have opened new offices in the center.

DIFC’s CEO Arif Amiri said, “During the first six months of 2020, the Centre continued to report progress on its 2024 targets. DIFC remained focused on accelerating its reputation as a leading global financial center and one of the world’s foremost FinTech and innovation hubs. During H1 2020, DIFC delivered a series of record-breaking months for registrations. This was achieved whilst we supported our clients during the global challenges of COVID-19. We would like to thank them for the trust they have in Dubai and DIFC.”