- E. Al Ghurair: Africa is a market of strategic importance to Dubai and the Chamber has expanded its presence on the continent in recent years
Dubai, UAE: The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry recently participated in the Investing in Africa conference in London, which was organised by the Wall Street Journal and attended by global investors, businessmen, government officials, and decision-makers.
Addressing delegates during the event, H.E. Majid Saif Al Ghurair, Chairman, Dubai Chamber, spoke about the importance of the Dubai-Africa trade relationship and shared an overview of the Chamber’s expansion plans and activities on the continent.
He explained the key role that Dubai plays as a major trade hub for many African companies, noting that the Chamber has expanded its presence in Africa, and currently operates representative offices in Ethiopia, Ghana, Mozambique and Kenya. These branches have been extremely effective in stimulating foreign investment into Africa, he revealed, adding that increase in non-oil trade between Africa and Dubai has also been supported by the emirate’s strategic geographic location and excellent logistics infrastructure.
Dubai Chamber’s Chairman stated that the Global Business Forum on Africa series has become an important platform for facilitating cooperation between African businesses and their UAE counterparts over the last few years, adding that the Chamber is planning to host the fourth conference in Dubai later this year.
H.E. Al Ghurair said: “Dubai’s trade relationship with Africa has gone from strength to strength in recent years, supported by the trade missions led by the Chamber and the expansion of our international offices in promising markets on the continent. The number of African companies registered with Dubai Chamber has now exceeded 12,000, which is a testament to the increased cooperation between both sides.”
Gulf entities have invested around $30 billion in Africa’s infrastructure projects over the last decade, while Sub-Saharan Africa has attracted an additional $2.7 billion in foreign direct investment from the GCC in the first half of 2015. Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya and Uganda, have seen the largest inflows of Gulf investments.
The Investing In Africa conference put the spotlight on key trends that are reshaping African economies, while sessions identified risks and opportunities across the continent. The event was attended by several high-calibre speakers, including H.E. Patrick Njoroge, Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya; Uche Orji, Managing Director and CEO, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority; Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, Director General and CEO, National Pension Commission of Nigeria; Chris Folayan, Founder and CEO, MallforAfrica.com; Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank; and Mo Ibrahim, Chairman, Mo Ibrahim Foundation.