HE Abdullah Al Saleh, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade and Industry
ABU DHABI -WAM
A high-level delegation comprising more than 50 persons, including representatives from the Ministry of Economy and the Council of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises and Projects, the SMEs Council, key businessmen and entrepreneurs, and other government officials, is set to visit Malaysia with the chief aim of exploring potential business and investment opportunities that both countries can benefit from. The trip, which is organised by the ministry and the SMEs Council, will include key visits to some of Malaysia’s leading innovation centres and business incubators. In addition, the UAE delegation will also be participating at this year’s edition of the Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises Annual Showcase, SMIDEX, which will be held from May 16th to 19th at the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre. Both the scheduled visits and the forthcoming participation at SMIDEX reflect the delegations' chief objective of giving local entrepreneurs the advantage of gaining leads, knowledge, and experience as well as establishing international business partnerships and networks.
Abdullah Al Saleh, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade and Industry Affairs, will lead the delegates who are flying to the capital city tomorrow, May 15th. Aside from ministry and council officials, representatives from various local chambers of commerce and industry and economic departments are joining the high-profile group.
This will be the first foreign visit for the members of the SMEs Council. The council was established in June 2015, pursuant of a resolution issued by the Cabinet, led by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and chaired by Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy. It strives to develop policies and strategic plans to promote SMEs in the country.
With the backing of its own SME sector, Malaysia’s annual SME showcase provides an ideal platform to showcase products and services and build global partnerships. During the event, panel discussions will be held to allow participating entrepreneurs to meet their foreign counterparts, discuss innovative ideas, exchange experiences, and meet important economic figures to learn about key government economic policies related to the SME industry.
Under the theme, ‘Rising to the Challenge’, more than 300 exhibitors will showcase their products and services in a prime area of ??10,000 square metres. Multinational corporations, SMEs, policymakers, government officials and leaders, industry experts, and investors are among this year’s participants.
Highlighting innovation and technology, the exhibitors will feature a wide range of products and services for various areas and industries such as oil and gas, machinery and engineering, ship building and repair, green technology, transportation, food and beverages, pharmaceuticals, textiles, information and communications technology, and chemical and petrochemical materials. The potential sales are expected to reach approximately US$105 million.
Al Mansouri said that the ministry aims to regulate and further develop the UAE’s SME industry and other national business pioneering sectors in line with UAE Vision 2021, national economic diversification policies, and knowledge economy transition efforts. He noted that the SME sector contributes more than 60 percent to the country’s gross domestic product.
The minister added that the visit to Malaysia is aligned with the common goal of both the ministry and SMEs Council to support national companies and industries as well as increase the country's exports, attract foreign investments, and foster leadership and innovation in the UAE business community.