SHARJAH- The Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) successfully concluded its roadshow in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, which formed part of its strategy to not only strengthen economic relations between Sharjah and the GCC countries, but also to promote the emirate as a key investment destination for businessmen and local and international companies operating in the GCC countries.
The three-day roadshow was conducted in the Saudi and Kuwaiti capitals and included roundtable events at Kuwait and Riyadh, in the presence of members of the Kuwait Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, respectively. The authority, also, held extensive meetings with representatives from top business and investment groups in Kuwait.
Shurooq’s delegation, led by Ahmed Obaid Al Qaseer, Shurooq’s Chief Operating Officer, included Mohamed Al Hosani, Director Waste Treatment and Disposal Technology, Bee’ah, Mohammed Juma Al Musharrekh, Head of Investment Promotion at Shurooq, Marwan Alichla,Investment Promotion Excecutive at Shurooq, Binu Pisharadi, Commercial Affairs Manager of Sharjah Healthcare City and Hamad Al Mazimi, from Sharjah Healthcare City.
During the two respective roundtables, Al Qaseer underlined the special relationships between Sharjah and the GCC countries and highlighted the existing cooperation in various economic, tourism and cultural fields. He said that Sharjah welcomes “brother” investors from the GCC countries, and that the Authority would provide them with various privileges and facilities to tap into the available opportunities in the highly vibrant and fast growing sectors which offer high returns on investment. He said that the GCC investments in the hospitality, leisure and service sectors, as well as in restaurants and cafes in the projects developed by Shurooq, are welcome.
Al Qaseer added: “We seek, through our roadshow, to highlight the investment potential in Sharjah and to familiarize business groups and economic authorities with the available investment opportunities. We aim, also, to explore ways of developing investment partnerships, economic relations and cooperation with our brotherly countries. We seek to reinforce and expand these relations to new levels of growth.”
In his presentation during the roundtables, Shurooq’s COO touched upon the investment opportunities available in the Emirate’s four key sectors and highlighted a number of the Authority’s mega projects, including Al Jabal Resort – The Chedi Khorfakkan, Sir Bu Nuair Island, the Heart of Sharjah, Al Bait Hotel, Al Majaz Waterfront, the Flag Island, the Kalba Eco-tourism project, Al Montazah Amusement and Waterpark, and Al Hisn Island, stressing that each of these have been carefully designed to stimulate the local economy, while also providing foreign investors with unique opportunities to capitalise on the phenomenal growth being witnessed in the tourism and leisure sector in Sharjah and the UAE.
In his presentation, Hamad Al Mazimi, from Sharjah Healthcare City (SHCC), outlined the many opportunities available to GCC investors in Sharjah’s burgeoning healthcare sector. He said that projected growth in healthcare in the emirate of Sharjah is estimated at 9.3% – from its current AED 4.59 billion to AED 6.55 billion – in the year 2016, which means that there are great opportunities for investors looking to become part of this phenomenal expansion. He added that Sharjah welcomes GCC investors who want to benefit from the increasing demand in this key sector.
On Sharjah’s advances in the field of sustainability, Mohamed Al Hosani, Director Waste Treatment and Disposal Technology, Bee’ah, said, “The UAE government is proactively implementing stricter environmental legislations and setting targets for renewable energies. This is spurring both public and private sectors to explore ways to achieve compliance and generate demand for environmental services. Bee’ah aims to tackle waste in the region and build a strong waste management infrastructure, with the ultimate goal of leading the emirate of Sharjah to become the first city in the Middle East to achieve Zero-waste-To-Landfill by 2015. Our aim is to foster the creation of sustainable and economically viable solutions for waste management and to thereby drastically reduce Sharjah and by extension, the UAE’s carbon footprint.”
During the second day of the roadshow in Kuwait, Shurooq’s delegation held a number of meetings with the directors and representatives of top companies, investment and trading groups with the aim of opening dialogue with the local business community in an effort to identify the needs and aspirations of Kuwaiti firms and businessmen.
The delegation was keen to highlight the investment potential and the facilities and incentives offered by Sharjah’s Government in various investment sectors, and representatives of the investment and trading companies present showed keen interest in boosting cooperation with Shurooq and other accompanying parties in the areas of leisure and tourism, healthcare, logistics and the environment, all major areas of potential growth in the emirate.
A large number of Kuwaiti and Saudi firms have branches in Sharjah and the UAE, in many sectors, including hospitality, retail, marine, banking, real estate, construction and medical services.
Established in 2009, Shurooq strives to encourage investment in the emirate of Sharjah by adopting the best international standards in order to provide quality services that help attract investors from the region and the world.
In recognition of its overall accomplishments, Shurooq was named The Banking Awards 2013 – FDI Agency of the Year in the MENA region, in The European’s Global Banking and Finance Awards.