23 January 2009

Dubai tops ‘Middle East Cities of the Future’ ranking by fDi magazine

Dubai is top of the league in the Middle East Cities of the Future ranking by fDi magazine, scoring highest points for economic potential, business friendliness, infrastructure and quality of life. Dubai scored 471 amongst 20 cities in the region evaluated, with Jeddah, Abu Dhabi, Manama, Riyadh and Ras Al Khaimah in the next five places, respectively.

Produced by the Financial Times group, fDi is the premier publication for the business of globalisation, and is regarded as the single most trusted source of information for companies involved with international expansion.

The Middle East Cities of the Future were ranked according to 76 criteria listed under Economic Potential, Business Friendliness, Tax & Other Costs, Human Resources, Quality of Life, Infrastructure and Foreign Direct Investment. Dubai ranked highest in four of these categories.

HE Mr Sami Al Qamzi, Director-General of the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED), said: “The top score of Dubai in the Middle East Cities of the Future ranking is a testimony to the concerted approach of DED, under the guidance and leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to create a high-growth environment and boost the economy by implementing strategies to attract foreign investment to the emirate. The result for Dubai is based on an evaluation of 76 parameters that, in essence, cover the entire aspects of the economy.”

He added: “One of the focal areas of DED is to create a robust and business friendly destination with utmost ease in setting up and managing businesses. The success of our approach has been reiterated by the high scores achieved in the fDi ranking. DED‘s foreign investment office headed by Mr Fahad Al Gergawi is dedicated to attracting regional & international foreign investment in Dubai, and one of the key objectives is to develop closer co-operation with key international investment partners.”

Mr Al Gergawi said: "This top-ranking highlights the opportunities that exist in Dubai for investors when evaluating the potential for international expansion. Dubai is very investor-friendly and enjoys a strategic location. The recognition as a leading destination by fDi magazine reinforces our commitment to ensure that our international partners realise and experience the competitive advantages offered by the Emirate.”

The Economic Potential category, in which Dubai topped the list, evaluated parameters such as 2009 GDP growth forecast, National GDP, economic initiatives, inflation, cash surplus, high-tech exports, industrial production growth and growth of urban population. “Winning this award and ranking high in many of the categories reflect Dubai's success in diversifying our economy, and the potential for growth that the Emirate offers despite the challenges that the state of the global economy brings at this point in time,” explained Mr Al Qamzi.

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