Dubai: Abu Dhabi’s Tawazun Economic Council brought together some of the world’s largest defence contractors on Sunday, pointing to the large number of opportunities that the UAE has on offer for such firms.

The 8th Defence Contractors Council meeting, organised by Tawazun, the government agency responsible for economic diversification efforts, saw companies such as Raytheon and SAAB gather to discuss the UAE’s defence industry.

“Set to celebrate 48 years of union, the UAE is steadily striding to achieve its future goals for sustainable and comprehensives development,” said Matar Ali Al Romaithi, chief economic development officer of Tawazun Economic Council, in his keynote speech.

“Thanks to the wise leadership’s vision, the UAE has continued the course of diversification and progress and achieved new milestones,” he added.

Al Romaithi went on to underline the remarkable growth in the UAE’s non-hydrocarbon sector, expected to pick up from two per cent in 2017 to five per cent in 2021. The sector’s contribution to the GDP will increase to 80 per cent.

He pointed out that Tawazun Economic Council is currently developing new initiatives that will add value to the economic development and consolidate the council’s successful partnerships, particularly in the areas of knowledge, technology and expertise transfer, as well as capability building.

Especially successful has been the Tawazun Economic Program, incentivising defence contractors to base their industrial and manufacturing operations in the UAE.