Bahrain showcases investment potential
Manama, May 27, 2014
The Economic Development Board (EDB) has met delegates from China and Malaysia to showcase investment opportunities in Bahrain and further strengthen bilateral ties.
The EDB is hosting journalists and editors representing a number of high-profile Chinese publications including the China Business Journal, Global Entrepreneur, and Economic Daily.
The trip follows the two nations celebrating 25 years of bilateral relations last month, and His Majesty King Hamad's visit to the China-Arab States Expo opening ceremony as the first guest of honour, at the invitation of the Chinese government, reported the Gulf Daily News, our sister publication.
The four-day visit includes meetings and interviews with a number of public and private sector representatives such as the EDB, Central Bank of Bahrain, the Bahrain International Investment Park, Chinamex Bahrain Management Company and China Harbour Engineering.
"Trade and culture ties have existed between Bahrain and China for years, evident in finds in archeological sites across Bahrain, dating to more than 500 years ago," Transportation Minister and EDB acting chief executive Kamal Ahmed said.
"Today, alongside trade, Chinese businesses have also been utilising Bahrain's status as the gateway to the GCC market, which is worth more than $1.5 trillion, and expected to reach $2 trillion by 2020," stated Ahmed.
"Leading Chinese companies, like Huawei, Bank of China, and China Harbour Engineering, are taking advantage of our low operating costs and highly skilled workforce by setting up business in Bahrain," he added.
In 2011, China became the largest importer to Bahrain, with non-oil imports totaling more than $1 billion.
With approximately 1,000 Chinese nationals living in Bahrain, the Asian giant is currently the third largest non-GCC market for Bahraini exports.
Meanwhile, a delegation from Malaysia-based Pharmaniaga, a leading manufacturer and distributor of generic drugs and distributor of medical devices, also met Ahmed.
The discussion centered around the company's future plans, as well as the various investment opportunities found in the Kingdom, which are led by the country's liberal economic environment.
Also explored were policies governing the manufacturing sector and efforts by the EDB to drive foreign direct investment into the kingdom and encourage companies to make Bahrain a headquarters for their operations in the region.
"It is our pleasure to meet the delegation from the Malaysia-based Pharmaniaga to discuss and explore Bahrain's investment opportunities and economic climate," EDB executive director of the business development Viviam Jamal said.
"We are proud of the fact that many large international companies such as Pharmaniaga find Bahrain to be an ideal location from which they can take advantage of the growing GCC market," remarked Jamal.
"This is indicative of the kingdom's positive and competitive economic environment, which actively encourages investment, and also boasts one of the most highly skilled workforces in the region," he added.-TradeArabia News Service