Saud Salim Al Mazrouei, Director of the Hamriyah Free Zone Authority (HFZA), emphasised that free zones have played a major and vital role not only in fostering Sharjah’s economic growth and attracting more enterprises and direct foreign investments to the Emirate, but also in improving Sharjah’s competitiveness and solidifying its reputation as a major international economic hub.
Al Mazrouei’s remarks were made during the 21st World Congress of Accountants (WCOA) held in Mumbai, from 18th to 19th November 2022. The global event was attended by more than 6,000 participants from 100 countries around the world, together with 5000+ virtual attendants. HFZA was the official sponsor of the conference, which is the largest gathering of accountants in the world.
Speaking during the event, Al Mazrouei stressed that Free Trade Zones are the cornerstone of development and create a welcoming atmosphere for foreign investment and contribute effectively to strengthen global competitiveness of economies.
“The Emirate of Sharjah and its free zones are a major supporter of the global economy, enhancing its competitiveness and improving its ability to recover from the repercussions of the pandemic. Sharjah has become the gateway to global trade, a safe haven for all investments, and a trade hub connecting the east with the west,” Al Mazrouei said, adding that the Emirate plays an important role through its free zones in underpinning existing businesses and attracting additional investments.
The HFZA Director stressed that free zones play a vital role in upgrading any country’s economic system, now that they are a major contributor to creating numerous job opportunities.
He stressed that HFZA has created an integrated system of incentives and advantages to draw in more businesses. “In addition to providing a flexible legislative and legal system that is able to quickly adapt to changes, HFZA accelerated the establishment of an advanced and modern infrastructure and is thereby offering modern services, cutting-edge facilities, communications, a transportation network, and logistical services, in addition to easy-to-access strategic locations to global markets.”
Al Mazrouei underscored that the HFZA is providing unmatched benefits to different investors from around the world, while embracing a digital transformation strategy to deliver smart services, attract foreign direct investment. “From proactively reaching out to customers and investors, to foreseeing and meeting their needs, HFZA is committed to help investors do business easily and smoothly.”
In his speech, Al Mazrouei spoke highly of the prosperous economic relations between the UAE and India, saying that such flourishing relations have recently reached a pinnacle with the signing of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, an agreement that reflects the strong trade ties and solid and historical economic partnerships between the two countries.
“This agreement will yield many good results, most notably the doubling of intra-trade by up to 120 percent to approximately US$100 billion in five years from its present value of about US$45 billion, while it will accomplish a rise of 1.7 percent or US$9 billion to the national GDP by 2030 and create around 140,000 job opportunities for the talented and skilled within the UAE economy over the same period.”