Bahrain's growth record is praised
Manama, October 13, 2010
Bahrain is proud to have had a significant role in the success of the oil industry and is equally proud of its track record of looking beyond oil to a future based on diversity and the ability to adapt to change.
That was the message from Economic Development Board chief executive officer Shaikh Mohammed bin Essa Al Khalifa at the opening of the 10th Middle East Energy Insurance Conference.
'Bahrain hosts the largest and most established financial services centres in the region, with more than 400 licensed financial institutions, and over four decades of experience,' he said.
'In recent years, many international insurers have developed their Middle East operations in Bahrain.
'Well-known names such as AIG, ACE, Allianz Group, Hannover Re, Legal & General and Lloyd's brokers PWS have chosen Bahrain as the optimum location for their operations,' Shaikh Mohammed said.
'Bahrain national skilled workforce can support the diversification of our economy without the need to rely solely on expatriate labour,' he added.
He said 67 per cent of the financial services workforce are Bahraini and 57 per cent of jobs added by financial institutions during 2008 were taken up by Bahrainis, taking the number of national workers in the sector to nearly 10,000.
'The insurance sector in the Middle East has great potential of growth.
'For example, in Bahrain, the insurance industry has been growing steadily and strongly - by 6 per cent in 2009, despite the global crisis,' he added.-TradeArabia News Service