Bahrain ‘offers low cost business setting’
Manama, February 3, 2013
Bahrain has one of the lowest costs of doing business in the GCC region, a report said, highlighting the kingdom’s competitive advantage as a location for investment into the Gulf market.
The average employment cost of hiring an employee in Bahrain, incorporating occupation costs, average wages, house rent allowances and other expatriate benefits, are significantly lower than the rest of the GCC region, added the new report from KPMG, a global network of professional firms.
Strategically located at the heart of the Gulf, Bahrain has long been considered the gateway to the region, with easy access to the large economies of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar. The kingdom’s highly skilled bilingual local workforce and low cost of doing business mean that it is a natural home for firms looking to invest in the region, the report said.
Alongside a low cost of doing business, other recent reports have also highlighted Bahrain’s economic strengths.
Bahrain was ranked first in the Middle East and 12th worldwide in the 2013 Wall Street Journal/ Heritage Foundation Economic Freedom Index. In September 2012, the Fraser Institute’s annual Economic Freedom of the World Index ranked Bahrain as the seventh freest economy in the world.
Kamal bin Ahmed, Minister of Transportation and acting chief executive of the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB), said: “We are very pleased about these findings, which reflect the work that the Kingdom has done to create an environment that helps businesses succeed.
“Alongside low operating costs, these efforts have helped to ensure that Bahrain also provides a low tax environment with no personal or corporate taxes, and a highly skilled local workforce that enables businesses to build a long-term presence in the region.”
KPMG said: “The Gulf economies have grown rapidly over the past decade and as the market expands, many local, regional and international businesses will look to continue to build their presence in the GCC. In doing so they need to make sure they choose the right location that offers the best platform for sustainable growth, and this report illustrates that Bahrain has a competitive cost environment.” – TradeArabia News Service