Abu Dhabi: Abu Dhabi is expecting to see a growth of five per cent next year, with the emirate’s economy well positioned for a strong rebound post COVID according to a top official from the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED).
“We will be the fastest growing and recovering [economy] in the Arab world and ranked 25th globally, so the recovery that we’re going to go through is very strong, and the expectation by 2021 is to have in Abu Dhabi a growth of five per cent,” said Rashid Abdulkarim Al Blooshi, undersecretary at ADDED.
“The growth will rely on the strategy that we have which is to have a diversified economy; we are going to continue to have the oil sector as a pillar, however, more than 50 per cent of the economy is going to rely on the non oil sector,” he added, highlighting how the non oil sector would play an integral role in Abu Dhabi’s post COVID recovery and beyond.
“Our objective in Abu Dhabi is to have innovation as the driver for the economy, and today we see all the infrastructures that are built – even during the pandemic – encouraging the technology [and] the innovation.
Incubating startups and entrepreneurs will also play a key role in Abu Dhabi’s continued economic growth according to Al Blooshi.
“We have the infrastructure to bring an innovative idea, to go into the research, the R&D, the availability of the information to get them together. Then when it’s time to be taken to the next phase, a platform like the one that is available in Abu Dhabi Global Market will enable this idea to be moved into a tangible project.
“[We are] creating an ecosystem for these innovative ideas to be kicked off, developed, improved and even reaching the international community,” he added.
“We know that to drive these innovative ideas that the private sector will be part of it, the private sector will be one of the strong pillars for developing these set ups and visions.”
National security priorities
The post COVID economy in Abu Dhabi will also see the emirate begin prioritising sectors that play a vital role for the emirate’s national security interests according to Dr Tariq Ben Hendi, director general, Abu Dhabi Investment Office.
“We look at what it is that we want to focus on from a national security perspective, whether it be food, healthcare, bio pharma and so on.
“There are key sectors that we are now really driving forward to make sure we develop local knowledge and local resiliency, but that we’re also able to then export,” he added.