Dubai welcomes Chinese investors and tourists
Dubai has been witnessing a rapid increase of Chinese businesses setting up and is ready to welcome more Chinese investment and tourists with beefed-up efforts to enhance cooperation with Chinese investors.
Eying to explore business cooperation potentials with Chinese businesses, a delegation led by Hadi Badri, CEO of the Economic Development Corporation, Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism, visited several Chinese cities with Shanghai the fourth leg on Tuesday and quite a number of business discussions conducted.
Dubai recorded more than 8.5 million international visitors during the first half of 2023, while the Dubai International Airport (DXB) retained its title as the busiest airport for international flights in July.
Foreign investors accounted for 48 percent of the trading value in the Dubai financial market during the first half of this year, with net purchases amounting to US$890.2 billion.
Over 8,000 Chinese companies have registered with Dubai Chamber, among which 664 registering last year, an increase of 70 percent in one year.
"Chinese businesses are growing at very fast pace," said Badri. "We really wanted to be here to engage with them in their home and understand how they are looking at Dubai."
"We have just under 2 million Chinese visiting Dubai every year for tourism, and we have a lot of trade between the UAE and China that flows through Dubai," he added. "We see an opportunity to actually partner with other top financial services cities around the world and Shanghai is one of them."
Dubai has mapped out a number of ambitious plans including the Dubai Economic Agenda 'D33' with total economic targets of AED 32 trillion (US$8.71 trillion) over the next 10 years. Launched early this year, it aims to double the size of Dubai's economy.
Badri said Dubai is very well connected with the rest of the world, and it has very low corporate tax. The United Arab Emirates has signed a number of free trade agreements and was one of the first to sign up to the Belt and Road Initiative.
"Chinese companies are using Dubai as a hub for the rest of the region and are growing very quickly," Badri said.
Badri said he expected the fourth quarter to be a breakthrough in terms of reconnecting, finding new agreements and new opportunities to do more together.
"Once the flight capacity fully opens up, we expect that there would be more visitors from China," he added.
Badri said Dubai is exploring opportunities in new sectors such as AI technology, new energy and biotech for cooperation with China.
"We will engage with more businesses in China and there would be much more discussions on what we can do together on trade, investment, talent, and technology," he said. "Based on existing trade and existing FDI, and the momentum that we are seeing, China is a very important market for us," he said.