Ras Al Khaimah targets European investors
Ras Al Khaimah, June 22, 2008
Ras Al Khaimah Free Trade Zone (RAK FTZ) has opened an office in Cologne, Germany, as part of its strategy to attract global businesses.
The new office aims to provide companies from Germany and other European countries with information and assistance aimed at helping them establish their business in Ras Al Khaimah.
It will conduct marketing activities, provide information and meet potential clients on a one-to-one basis. In addition to attracting businesses, the German office will also strengthen co-operation with German federal and state governments in trade and industrial sectors.
“Europe is one of our three most important markets,” says RAK FTZ chief executive officer Oussama El Omari, adding that “European companies already form 31 per cent of our clients and one in four enquiries from Europe come from Germany.”
The launch was marked by a seminar for German companies on opportunities in Ras Al Khaimah and the UAE. The event attracted over 40 participants representing companies, professional associations, chambers of commerce and public authorities, such as representatives from the UAE Embassy in Germany, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia of Germany, along with representatives from German companies already registered in the RAK FTZ.
El Omari said the new office will play a fundamental role in attracting German and European businesses to base their regional operations at the RAK FTZ by introducing potential investors to the business opportunities available there, the zone's state-of-the-art facilities, the perfect environment created at the zone to do various types of businesses, the word's most advanced infrastructural projects built at the zone, and the tax-free system.
“The office has unlimited opportunities to attract especially industrial projects, due to the strength of the German industrial sector,” added El Omari. “Thanks to the vision of Shaikh Saud bin Saqr Al Quassimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler, Ras Al Khaimah has become a key industrial hub in the UAE. We are determined to expand RAK’s industrial sector even further.”
More than 160 German companies have registered in RAK FTZ, including companies such as DHL, Innovida, German Label, RAK-German Engineering and ConvergInCommunications. The German company Knauf, one of the world’s leading producers of building materials, recently laid the foundation for its first gypsum board plant in the Middle East. Once completed, the Dh 500 million ($136m) plant will produce building materials such as gypsum boards, metal studs, channels, joint compounds, drywall accessories and plasters, for construction sites accross the UAE and the Middle East.
Zone’s chairman Shaikh Faisal bin Saqr Al Qassimi said: “Bilateral relationships between Germany and Ras Al Khaimah have been expanding rapidly through increased trade, tourism and investment flows”. He highlighted the importance of Germany as a prominent European country with which the free zone is keen to share very warm bilateral relationship characterised by strong government-to-government co-operation and highly productive business ties.
Shaikh Faisal said that the German office will play a fundamental role in attracting German and European businesses to base their operations at the RAK FTZ.
RAK FTZ, which was awarded to be the leading Emerging Free Zone in the region for a second year, has succeeded in registering almost 5,000 companies. – TradeArabia News Service