Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Oxford Business Group, a leading global publishing, research and consulting company. The agreement will see the UK-based organisation conduct an in-depth study on the emirate’s economic landscape, with the report to form the basis of the emirate’s ongoing investment promotion strategy.
The ‘Sharjah Report 2016’ will outline the investment opportunities in Sharjah and provide an overall picture of trends and business prospects in the emirate. It will also give detailed information relating to Sharjah’s efforts in economic diversification, which is attributing to the robust growth being witnessed by most sectors in the emirate.
The MoU was signed on the sidelines of Shurooq’s participation in the Arabian Travel Market (ATM 2016), which is currently taking place at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre. The agreement was signed by HE Marwan bin Jassim Al Sarkal, CEO of Shurooq, and Jana Treeck, Manager Director for Middle East at Oxford Business Group.
Under the terms of the agreement, Oxford Business Group will benefit from Shurooq’s expertise in conducting the study and will utlise its sources and statistics in the compiling of the final Sharjah Report 2016, which is intended to be a comprehensive guide to all economic aspects of the emirate.
Speaking about the importance of the report, Al Sarkal said; “Shurooq continuously strives to improve the business environment in Sharjah and boost investors’ trust by providing an accurate picture of its investment reality. As a result of Shurooq’s ceaseless efforts in this area, we have noticed a remarkable growth in the flow of investments into Sharjah and an increase in investors’ trust over the past few years.”
He added that Sharjah’s economy will more likely continue to see continued growth over the next few years supported by the developed performance of various sectors in the emirate, due to its resilient and diversified economy, which will help it avert risks associated with reliance on a single sector.
Al Sarkal went on to say; “Sharjah is committed to sharing information with investors who are our partners in our quest to achieve sustainable growth. This information also reflects our continuous efforts to integrate strategies and development plans with multiple Sharjah-based entities, and to create a business ecosystem that creates a sustainable and optimistic confidence among investors. The signing of the MoU with Oxford Business Group aims to provide a reliable and transparent source of information, data and important economic figures about all sectors that make up Sharjah’s GDP.”
He pointed out that Shurooq strives to establish long-term relationships with companies, investors and businesspersons who look forward to find a footing in Sharjah in the future.
“We chose the Arabian Travel Market as the venue for the signing of this Memorandum of Understanding because it is a global platform that brings together government tourism bodies, tour operators, travel agents and other professionals in the industry. Tourism is increasingly an area of investment in Sharjah, with the emirate breaking new ground in previously niche sectors, such as eco-tourism," the Shurooq CEO said.
"ATM is an internationally-acclaimed exhibition, which enjoys official visits at the highest levels. Our presence at the event means that we are able to efficiently promote Sharjah and its promising investment landscape, as well as highlight the activities of Shurooq, its many tourist projects and its array of rewarding opportunities," he added.
Jana Treeck, Manager Director for Middle East at Oxford Business Group, said; "The important measures that have been implemented to diversify Sharjah's economy over the past years and the efforts made by the emirate to firmly establish and solidify stability and economic growth, send reassuring messages to local and international investors."
"Through our joint research with Shurooq, we will examine what has already been achieved by the emirate and make the most of these positive developments to help attract even more companies, businesspersons and tourists,” he added.
The Sharjah Report 2016, published in English, will be distributed among international investors and business leaders, and will serve as a guide for all those who want to learn more about all aspects of the emirate's economy, including macroeconomics, infrastructure and developments across its sectors, such as finance, industry, trade, service, energy, environment, tourism, education, health, security, real estate, transport, logistics, agriculture and media.
The first day of ATM 2016 saw a number of dignitaries, senior officials, government delegations and tourism experts visit Shurooq’s stand, which forms part of the pavilion of the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority. Among the senior VIPs attending was Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, who was warmly greeted by the authority's representatives and acquainted with the tourism projects being showcased by Shurooq.
Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the Ajman Tourism Development Department, also visited the stand, where the Shurooq representatives briefed him about the authority's projects.
Commenting on the visits, Al Sarkal said; "We have been honoured by the visits of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Humaid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the Ajman Tourism Development Department. The interest showed by officials in Shurooq's projects reflects the authority’s prestigious status and acclaimed reputation – we look forward to welcoming more delegations, specialists and visitors to our stand at ATM 2016 to familiarise them with our projects."