With Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid launching the much awaited Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030, UAE is all set to gain its glory back as a top destination for conducting business. The strategy document states its intentions clearly; to make Dubai, “an international hub for knowledge based innovation and sustainable industrial activities”. The impact of this brand new initiative will be huge, especially on the job market which would experience a certain boost in the coming years. Let us examine in detail.
Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 is a big step towards ensuring an amiable economic environment in the coming future. The aim of the strategy is to add at least Dh165 billion or $45billion to UAE’s economy over the coming two decades. The focus is on adding production capabilities within Dubai, helping it to gain financial sovereignty. As envisaged by the Strategy 2030, the industrial sector should grow by Dh18 billion giving rise to 27,000 new employment opportunities while investment in research and development should grow by an additional Dh700 million, all by 2030.
Some of the objectives being addressed by Dubai Industrial Strategy 2030 include:
– Increase total GDP, along with an increase in the output of manufacturing industries
– Improve innovation, labor productivity through enhanced R&D spend
– Make Dubai the preferred choice of global manufacturing businesses and expand the global footprint of home-grown companies
– Ensure strict compliance to environment friendly manufacturing practices that limits energy consumption and waste
– Become the global center for the Islamic product manufacturing
If the vision is successfully achieved, the reputation of UAE and Dubai in particular as a global manufacturing hub will see a major makeover.
The main sectors targeted under this strategic vision are:
UAE is home of Emirates Airlines, one of the leading aviation companies in the world. The Strategy will focus at strengthening the industry position of Emirates Airlines through induction of latest technology. The aviation sector of UAE recently got a huge boost when agreements were signed with Italy to enhance bilateral relations while on the other hand it became the member of the executive board of Arab Civil Aviation Commission. Another objective of the Strategy is to develop in-house manufacturing capabilities in certain aerospace sub-industries, a step towards self-reliance.
Pharmaceuticals & Medical Equipment
In a development that will delight job seekers, Dubai is opening up its gates for setting up manufacturing facilities of international drug manufacturers that are interested in expanding their global footprint and lowering business costs. With new manufacturing facilities, a lot of jobs will be generated for the local population. Professionals working in the capacity of scientist will have a special role to play as the initial focus will be on developing low cost indigenous drugs through research and development.
Food & Beverage/FMCG
This sector is integral to UAE’s ambition of making Dubai the ‘capital of Islamic Economy’, considering Halal Industries as a major focus point of the Strategy 2030 blueprint. GCC region is known for importing around 70% of their food needs. By developing superior manufacturing and logistical capabilities, Dubai stands to take advantage of this situation and become a major hub for food products in the region. Dubai’s Jebel Ali port is currently one of the busiest manufacturing hubs, and although it is a tad expensive than competitors, it still remains a favorite for many businesses.
Machinery and Equipment
Representing a quarter of the total industrial sector in Dubai, Machinery and Equipment is a key focus of the blueprint. The Strategy 2030 plans to keep this sector competitive through policy changes and innovation. Machinery and Equipment is expected to keep attracting large investments considering the lucrative profitability opportunities it provides.
Aluminum & Fabricated Metals
UAE is one of the leading aluminum producing nations in the world and accounts for more than 50 percent of the Gulf’s aluminum production. Strategy 2030 will work towards strengthening its share in the global market, not only in manufactured primary products, but also in finished products. One of the key focuses of the national aluminum industry would be to cut back on imports and support the domestic aeronautical industry with various materials. This objective will require new factories to be setup that will again lead to more job generation.
Maritime is again a highly significant sector, and Dubai is very well placed with its DP World operated Jebel Ali Port, which is the largest in the Middle East. The port is well on its way to increase the total handling capacity from current 19 m teu to 22.1 m teu by 2018 and DIS aims to capitalize on this continuous increase in magnitude of trade and sea traffic through localization of manufacturing capabilities in certain maritime sub-industries.
These sectors are surely going to be at the helm of job creation in Dubai and whole of UAE in the future. If the DIS 2030 turns out as a success it would make Dubai a global economic force to reckon with. As Sheikh Mohammed puts it, “Nations are recognized for what they produce and the value they add to the global economy”.
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