Investment

Annual Investment Meeting – Foreign Direct Investment

 Annual Investment Meeting – Foreign Direct Investment

The 10th edition of the Annual Investment Meeting (AIM 2020), the world’s leading investment platform, will highlight the changing global investment landscape and the need to develop work mechanisms and innovative investment strategies that help facilitate FDI flows into global economies, to promote sustainable economic growth, particularly in light of the global FDI decline under the growing global economic risks, rising protectionist trends and trade tensions.

Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, AIM 2020, the world’s leading investment platform, will take place at Dubai World Trade Centre from 24 to 26 March.

The three-day event, themed ‘Investing for the Future: Shaping the Global Investment Strategies’, aims to chart a roadmap towards a more flexible and advanced global economy, by linking FDI opportunities to emerging economies, to ensure sustainable economic growth and further achieving sustainable development goals (SDGs).

H.E Abdullah Al Saleh, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade and Industry, said: “AIM 2020 aims to offer an ideal platform that brings together top government officials, business leaders, investment experts and policymakers, to share knowledge and expertise, keep abreast of the latest trends and best practices in investment and explore new avenues of investment to help address the decline in global FDI flows.”

Al Saleh noted that a stellar galaxy of top industry speakers and business experts will engage in panel discussions, networking events and B2B meetings to address global challenges facing securing viable investment and explore new innovative methods that help generate new sources of investment and channel more capital and investment into the global economy.

Commenting on the global FDI landscape, Al Saleh said: “With a three-year decline in global FDI flows, it is imperative for the international business community and policymakers to act now, not tomorrow, to develop innovative strategies that help pump more FDI flows into global economies. This is an issue of high importance, particularly in light of the FDI decline according to the UNCTAD’s World Investment Report 2019, which shows that global FDI flows slipped by 13 per cent in 2018 to $103 trillion from $105 trillion in 2017, for the third consecutive annual decline.”

He added: “Nevertheless, the weak underlying FDI trend indicates that a rise in FDI may be relatively modest and may be further reined in by other factors, such as geopolitical risk, escalating trade tensions and a global shift towards more protectionist policies.”

According to the UNCTAD report, FDI flows to developing countries remained stable, rising by 2 per cent. Because of the increase and the anomalous fall in FDI in developed countries, the share of developing countries in global FDI increased to 54 per cent, a record growth. The increase was supported by continued resource-seeking inflows and diversified investments, while flows to developing Asia, the largest recipient region, were up 4 per cent.

“Thanks to our wise leadership’s forward-looking strategies and cutting-edge investment policies, flows to the UAE increased to $10.4 billion in 2018, and is ranked first in the Arab world, and 27th globally in attracting FDI flows. The sectors of trade, real estate, finance and insurance, manufacture and construction- are the top recipients of FDI flows to the UAE,” Al Saleh noted.

He referred to new rules and legislation implemented recently by the UAE to increase investment from overseas and diversify national economy, most notably the 100 per cent foreign ownership for122 economic activities across 13 sectors including renewable energy, space, agriculture, manufacturing, transport, healthcare, logistics, hospitality, food services, ITC, art, education and entertainment, among others.

“Relaxing foreign ownership rules is a further measure to liberalise and strengthen the investment environment and will be a critical step in the development of new sectors and industries,” Al Saleh emphasised.

“The key goal of our new policies is to open and expand economic sectors, attract new investors and cement the global competitiveness of our national economy. Thanks to our wise leadership and cutting-edge policies, the UAE is ranked 16th out of 190 countries in the 2020 Doing Business report published by the World Bank,” Al Saleh added.

The AIM 2020 will feature panel discussions, networking events, investment pitch competitions, B2B meetings and workshops involving business leaders, decision makers, academia and investment experts from around the globe to address challenges and explore new investment opportunities that contribute to sustainable economic growth on the global stage.

The 2020 AIM edition has expanded its agenda to include six Pillars – AIM 2020 (FDI), Startups, Future Cities, Small & Medium Enterprises, Foreign Portfolio Investment – and One Belt, One Road event; and two community-based activities to support Least Developed Countries.

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