SHARJAH, 9th December, 2016 (WAM) — “Invest in Sharjah,” Sharjah FDI office’s flagship driver for promoting investment opportunities in the emirate and a subsidiary of the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), recently took part in the Arab Aviation Summit in Jordan, held on 5th and 6th December.
This came as part of Invest in Sharjah’s efforts to shed light on the myriad investment opportunities across the emirate in trade and tourism, thus driving profitable partnerships with regional and international businesses.
Under the theme: “Linking Cultures, Driving Economies,” the summit featured keynote addresses, insightful discussion panels and interactive workshops. The event also saw a Shurooq delegation, led by Marwan bin Jassim Al Sarkal, CEO of Shurooq; Saif Mohamed Salim Alsuwaidi, Investment Promotion Manager at Shurooq; Mohamed Al Suwaidi, Executive Office Manager; ministers, officials and CEOs from various organisations around the world, highlighting the crucial role travel and tourism could play in the growth of Arab economies.
The participants also explored potential strategies that would allow long-term, symbiotic private-public sector partnerships in developing the tourism market in the region.
During an interactive session titled “The Role of the Private Sector in the Development of the Arab Travel and Tourism Industry,” Al Sarkal discussed the key role private sector companies played in ensuring continuous growth of Arab aviation and tourism industry, and stressed the need to further motivate and engage them to make bigger investments in the sector.
“The private sector’s investments in the Arab aviation and tourism industry play a key role in the development of the overall Arab world’s economies, and particularly this sector. This gives private service providers and businesses an ideal opportunity to tap further into these lucrative markets and establish strong business relationships with government sector partners, contributing to the industry’s growth and sustainability,” Al Sarkal said.
“It is true that the Arab aviation and tourism industry is one of the fastest growing globally, but to ensure sustainability of this growth, private businesses and investors need to come forward and make more substantial contributions. A free flow of FDI should also be allowed in these industries to further strengthen and modernise them,” he added.
Al Sarkal stressed the importance of overcoming challenges that hold private companies from investing in the aviation and tourism industry in Arab countries. “Borders are key obstacles that prevent investments as they restrict smooth movement of individuals and capital. The incompatibility of cross-border laws and legislations also greatly limit expansion, making it hard for investors to quickly adapt to the rapidly changing business environment,” he said.
Recognising this dilemma, Sharjah has, over a period of time, enacted many laws that paved the way for fluidity of investment, capital, ventures and cash flow, in addition to simplifying procedures of residency and visa issuance for investors and tourists, he added.
Sharjah-Jordanian investment opportunities were highlighted through a series of high-level meetings between Al Sarkal and senior officials and ministers from Jordan. They also discussed bilateral business ventures.
The summit was the region’s most prominent aviation and tourism event, which focussed on trends, insights and opportunities that drive the ongoing growth and development of this industry in the Arab world.