Dubai Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI), an agency of the Department of Economic Development ( DED ), will tour major cities in the US this month as part of introducing the new economic direction of Dubai to public and private sector leaders in North America and attracting innovative technologies and services to the emirate.
During the 10-day tour, the delegation will address business representatives, state government officials and trade facilitators in the cities of Boston (Massachusetts), Atlanta (Georgia) and Chicago (Illinois). Representatives from the US Commercial Services, State Offices, USA-UAE Business Council, UAE Embassy and the World Trade Centres in the respective states will also join the interactions between the two sides.
"Dubai emerging as a growth driver in critical industries, such as aviation, and the growing number of multinationals moving to Dubai, call for stronger networking with leading economies around the world. Our objective is to present the new thrust areas of Dubai's economic development strategy to US businesses and highlight the potential for enhanced bilateral trade and investment," commented Fahad Al Gergawi, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai FDI.
Bilateral trade between the UAE and US reached Dh 91.3 billion (US$24.9 billion) in 2014 and the UAE remained the top export destination for the US in the entire Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region for the sixth year in a row. Meanwhile, UAE exports to the US increased 22.3% in 2014 and reached Dh 10.3 billion from Dh8.4 billion.
"The infrastructure Dubai has created and the sectors being developed with an eye on niche markets will be of special interest to the United States, especially the robust growth seen across Dubai's logistics, tourism and services industries. The UAE-US partnership has had proven success in advancing trade, creating jobs and stimulating growth," added Al Gergawi.
The Dubai FDI delegation will begin its US itinerary with a two-day meeting organised by the Massachusetts Office of International Trade and Investment (MOITI) in Boston on March 21.
Placed among the top 30 most economically powerful cities in the world, Boston is a major seaport along the East Coast of US. While Boston is also a leading centre of education, tourism and financial services, the state of Massachusetts is a major exporter of X-Ray machines, telecommunication equipment and aircraft parts to the UAE.
"Trade exchange with the UAE has helped create a large number of jobs in the US while at the same time US technical knowhow and industrial excellence have ably complemented some of our iconic achievements. For example, Emirates has one of the largest fleet of Boeing 777 aircraft, a pivot of the airline's expanding long-haul operations," said Al Gergawi.
Atlanta in the state of Georgia, which boasts of the largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the US, will be the second pit-stop for the Dubai FDI delegation. Georgia is a leading exporter of passenger vehicles, turbojet parts, aerospace equipment and generators to the UAE. The Atlanta programme is organised with the support of the Metro Atlanta Chamber and the Georgia Department of Economic Development .
"It makes good business sense for multinationals in the US to be based out of Dubai. The city sits in the middle of a vast and promising consumer market of 2.2 billion people spread across the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia," Al Gergawi explained.
"Being in Dubai means you are well-integrated into an efficient supply chain comprising the world's busiest airport and one of the 10 largest container terminals. Such connectivity and competitive lead times will bolster US products, sought after for their quality and excellence, with a unique market access," said Al Gergawi.
Chicago, the third most populous city in the US and a top financial centre in the world, will be the final destination for the Dubai FDI delegation. The city, home to 12 of the Fortune 500 companies and the aerospace giant Boeing, has also been a hub of retail trade from a very early period and hosts leading brands such as Walgreens, Sears, OfficeMax, Ace Hardware, Claire's and Crate & Barrel. The Chicago event is being supported by the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce.
"Our itinerary has been planned to specifically address the strengths of the resident business community in each of the cities and attract their attention by drawing parallels with Dubai. The retail trade in Dubai and its high concentration of premium brands will definitely be of interest to industry leaders in Dubai, especially those looking at expanding beyond home," commented Ibrahim Ahli, Director of Investment Support at Dubai FDI.