UAE leaders pledge to support SMEs

10/12/2012 - Dubai Investment News Posted by Neil King
UAE leaders pledge to support SMEs
Government leaders in the UAE have introduced a new law that is aimed at boosting entrepreneurism across the country.The legislation states that government bodies must set aside five per cent of their budget to purchase products or services from small and medium-sized enterprises, WAM reports.It is hoped the extra support for less established organisations will provide a significant boost to the UAE's economy.UAE vice president and prime minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum approved the law and also urged budding businesspeople to be ambitious."Our wishes for Emirati youth are enormous. We always tell them do not get scared about small beginnings, but have big dreams," he was quoted as saying."Small enterprises will grow and today's youth are leaders of private sector tomorrow."Cities like Dubai and Abu Dhabi have become very important corporate hubs and many international companies have set up headquarters in these places in recent years.Sheikh Mohammed believes the latest reforms will make it even easier for start-up firms to blossom."The new law aims to encourage innovation, research and shift towards the knowledge economy, as well as strengthening the state's competitiveness in business at the regional and international levels," he added.Entrepreneurs who start a new enterprise in the UAE have a distinct advantage over their peers who decide to create a business in another part of the Middle East.Research recently conducted by the Fraser Institute showed that Dubai and Bahrain offer the highest level of "economic freedom" in the Arab world.Indeed, both nations received an overall score of 8.1 out of ten, which was streets ahead of other countries in the Middle East and North Africa. It also represented an annual improvement for the UAE, as it bettered its rating of 7.9 in 2011.Taking all of this into account, it is easy to see why the UAE's gross domestic product has increased considerably in 2012 and is predicted to rise even further over the next few years.