Opportunities for strengthening economic ties between the UAE and China are significant as the Emirates are the largest Middle East market for Chinese products. Director promotions and overseas offices, TCA Abu Dhabi, Mubarak Al Nuaimi commented saying, “It is important for us to continue to build momentum in the China market […] China has now become our largest overseas source market for the very first time, overtaking the UK, India and Germany.
Expanded tourism offerings have increased Chinese visitors and have captured more business from China. UAE has recently joined the Welcome Chinese program that aims to boost China arrivals and the visitor experience. Such an “initiative will progress in the next two years, to boost arrivals and to help visitors see more and do more in Abu Dhabi, and to make Chinese visitors stay longer,” said Mubarak Al Shamsi, director of Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, at a tourism forum last month.
Recently, Dubai International Financial Centre Authority (DIFC Authority) successfully concluded a weeklong visit (8-15 May) in Beijing exploring investment opportunities with a view to strengthening the economic growth of both China and the UAE. During the visit, UAE Minister of state, Dr Sultan Al Jaber who met with senior Chinese government officials spoke of opportunities for collaboration and investment across sectors of mutual interest, including energy, infrastructure and technology.
DIFC’s participation in Dubai Week in China aimed to build on the economic cooperation between the countries. DIFC, a Federal Financial Free Zone administered by the Government of Dubai, has a strong commitment to consolidate its position as a financial powerhouse.
Deputy Chief Executive Officer at DIFC Authority Arif Amiri, said the economic engagement, bilateral ties provides a key gateway for Chinese companies to grow their presence. He elaborated on Dubai’s potential as a mature financial ecosystem to Chinese firms that are eyeing to access markets in the Middle East and the wider region. Amiri emphasized the financial centre’s positioning to harness the increased cross-border trade and investment activity to develop an influx of wealth from markets like China. He adds that DIFC provides a stable, mature and secure base for financial institutions to develop their wholesale businesses.
China, which has the largest population in the world, is becoming an economic leader and manufacturer in the world that attract foreign direct investment (FDI) from countries all over the world, including the United Arab Emirates, wanting to expand and find new import/export partners for their goods.
The UAE too is looking to benefit from China’s surging economic growth. Today, there is a strong and growing bilateral relationship based on shared values and common political and economic interests.