Tuesday 07-02-2023 20:02 pm
SHARJAH, 7th February, 2023 (WAM) — The first UAE-Thailand Business Council was launched during the UAE-Thailand Business Forum, organized by the Federation of UAE Chambers of Commerce and Industry, FCCI.
The forum discussed ways to boost economic relations between the two countries.
The Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) hosted the meeting during the visit of a Thai business delegation led by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Commerce Jurin Laksanawisit.
The event saw the launch of the first joint business council between the UAE and Thailand, established under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the UAE FCCI and the Joint Standing Committee of Commerce, Industry and Banking (JSCCIB) in Thailand.
The committee is made up of business leaders and representatives of the private sector in both countries. It serves as their representative body, communicating their aspirations and goals. Its aim is to strengthen cooperation between the UAE and Thailand and increase trade and investment exchanges.
Dr. Thani bin Ahmed Al Zeyoudi, UAE Minister of State for Foreign Trade, confirmed that the establishment of the UAE and Thailand’s first joint business council reflects the two countries’ commitment to expand economic and trade cooperation and create opportunities for UAE and Thai businesses to build sustainable partnerships that support their development goals.
Al Zeyoudi noted that the UAE and Thailand share strong and growing economic ties in various important areas as they help facilitate trade and joint investment between the two countries. In 2022, the UAE is Thailand’s largest trading partner in the Arab world and ranks 13th globally. The non-oil trade volume between the two countries reached 6.1 billion US dollars, an increase of 21% over 2021.
The minister went on to say that the two countries have made significant progress in terms of investment flows. By the end of the third quarter of 2022, UAE FDI in Thailand reached US$300 million, accounting for 52% of all investments in the Middle East.
As of the end of last year, Thailand’s direct investment in the UAE amounted to US$84 million, demonstrating the strength of economic and trade cooperation between the two countries.
Al Zeyoudi said that the UAE, under the guidance of its visionary leadership, has recently launched several strategic initiatives and policies to transform its economic model into one that is more flexible, sustainable and competitive while keeping abreast of future trends And focus on new economic sectors.
He highlighted recent changes to the Business Companies Act, which now allows foreign investors to fully own their businesses, while also mentioning plans for a global economic agreement. The UAE has already signed agreements with India, Israel and Indonesia and launched an initiative to attract digital and technology companies.
The Minister emphasized that the country is actively pursuing investment and talent attraction through a comprehensive strategy, encouraging the Thai business community to take advantage of the opportunities and advantages offered by the UAE’s business and investment environment.
Laksanawisit emphasized that the forum marks a step forward in strengthening economic ties between Thailand and the UAE and is an effective and practical way to establish joint investment projects.
He said that the UAE is an important economic center in the region, with all economic sectors developing in an all-round way and offering advanced logistics services, favorable legislation and state-of-the-art infrastructure.
Meanwhile, Waleed Bukhatir, Second Vice-Chairman of the SCCI Board of Directors, reiterated that the UAE private sector is a key player in the MENA region, contributing to strengthening bilateral relations with other countries.
As of January 2023, the Chamber has approximately 525,000 members. The private sector includes 50 joint business councils with countries around the world, including the newly announced UAE-Thai Business Council, adding that the UAE private sector employs more than 5.26 million workers of various nationalities.