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‘UAE to target zero contribution of oil to GDP and focus on knowledge-based economy’

Country to foster growth in industrial transport, space, renewable energy and information technology, says economy minister

| | Apr 19, 2016 | 11:11 am
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Dubai, UAE: Addressing the most pressing issue in the country at present, UAE Economy Minister, Sultan Bin Saeed Al Mansouri, told delegates at the sixth edition of Annual Investment Meeting that the contribution of oil to the country’s GDP, which has been on a descent for the past several months, will slip down from its current rate at 30% to 20% by 2021, and will likely hit zero per cent in the next 50 years, reported Zawya.

The event was inaugurated by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

As GCC countries are largely dependent on the revenues from oil, prices of which have slid down to more than 60%, their governments, the report said, are now taking measures to strengthen their public finances to continue its social and infrastructure spending. Adding to this, Al Mansouri said, “Our strategy at present is focused on building a knowledge based economy powered by various sectors such as industrial transport, space, renewable energy and information technology.”

The UAE, the report said, intends to increase its contribution to FDI to five per cent of the GDP over the next five years, and this move has propelled the country to the number one position regionally and 22nd globally.

The minister added that the country’s dominance in attracting the highest FDI in the GCC region, economic openness in policies and implementation of timely strategic plans by the UAE government towards diversifying the economy has helped in the growth of various sectors and created a fertile environment to attract business to record levels.

The IMF, the report mentioned, had recently commended the fiscal policies adopted by the country that has increased competitiveness in the market, and combined with the large bank assets, owned by the local banking sectors, has made the UAE second largest economy in the region and 17th globally, according to the World Economic Forum (WEF) indicators. This, the report added, comes at a time when the world economy is growing at a slow pace due to falling oil prices and demand.

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