New Body Will Streamline Dubai’s Approach To Attracting Foreign Investment

Posted: 26 February 2014

The creation of a new, autonomous government body to nurture an attractive investment climate in Dubai makes the Emirate’s approach to attracting foreign investment more streamlined and cohesive – a milestone in its ambitions towards becoming one of the world’s leading FDI recipients.

As an affiliate of the Department of Economic Development, the Dubai Investment Development Agency (DIDA) will coordinate with various government agencies to promote Dubai as a world-class investment destination. To that end, it is tasked with drawing up the Emirate’s investment strategies, identifying new opportunities, conducting detailed reviews of the Emirate’s business climate on a sector-by-sector-basis, and identifying hurdles potential investors might face.

Eli Hyder, Managing Partner of Bond lawyers says: “Dubai already has the foundations in place for a globally leading investment destination: excellent infrastructure and transport networks, a prosperous domestic market, very low taxes and an abundance of well-established industries. One of the main advantages the Dubai Investment Development Agency it that it has been established to step back and forensically examine the investment climate, identifying specific underexploited opportunities and barriers that may deter foreign companies from selecting the Emirate. On the back of its expert analysis, it has a legal mandate to take the steps necessary to bolster Dubai’s international competitiveness”.

Since experiencing a slowdown in the aftermath of the global financial crisis, Dubai’s economic growth has rebounded to pre-crisis levels. In the UAE as a whole, analysts anticipate 2014 to outstrip last year’s growth rate of 4.5 per cent. The latest available figures show that foreign investment jumped by more than a quarter in 2012. Bolstered by notable recent successes – most prominently, a winning bid to host the World Expo2020 – DIDA has been established to help the Emirate fully capitalise on this resurgence in investor appetite.

Mr. Hyder added: “The new agency is responsible for ‘consolidating trust in Dubai’s investment environment’. That is very important – but one challenge is to ensure that all the bodies involved in promoting Dubai as an investment destination have clearly defined roles and responsibilities. If they are effectively coordinated, they will complement each other very well; if not, there is the risk of duplication of effort and mission creep “.