Abu Dhabi’s holding company ADQ has allocated a USD10 billion fund to speed up work on a partnership between the UAE, Jordan and Egypt, which covers five priority sectors, based on the directives of the President Sheikh Mohammed, according to a statement by Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology. The five sectors of mutual interest identified by the partnership include petrochemicals, textiles, pharmaceuticals, agriculture and food and fertilizers.
Facets of the new initiative will include establishing large industrial projects, creating new job opportunities, contributing to increased economic output, supporting industrial production, increasing exports and diversifying the economies of the three countries.
Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs said that developing the industrial sector in the three countries will enable industrial growth, diversify the economy and increase contribution to the GDP. He also said that the partnership reflects the ability of countries in the region to enhance relations and launch new industries and projects. He further added that doing so will help in creating promising opportunities for generations to come.
In a statement, Dr. Al Jaber said that the ambitious partnership will create industrial opportunities worth several billions of dollars by identifying joint industrial projects. He said that these projects will focus on creating world-class industries with high quality standards in the priority sectors.
The deal comes in the wake of efforts by the UAE to increase the industrial sector’s contribution to the GDP to AED300 billion by the year 2031.
UAE, Jordan and Egypt collectively have a GDP of about USD765 billion and more than 60 million young people, Dr Al Jaber stated.
He added that in the food and agriculture sector, there existed an opportunity to increase production of corn and wheat from the current level of 16.5 million tons to 30 million tons annually.
Dr. Al Jaber further noted that the metals sector, including aluminum iron, potash and silica, will provide opportunities for projects worth approximately USD23 billion through the manufacture of products such as glass, automotive components, electrical wires and solar panels.
The combined contribution of the petrochemical industry to the GDP of the UAE, Egypt and Jordan economies was USD16 billion in 2019.
Dr. Al Jaber said that the new partnership will create opportunities for the development of the sector and related industries which are valued at over USD21 billion.
ADQ investment to create new opportunities
Mohamed Alsuwaidi, Managing Director and Chief Executive of ADQ, said that the USD10 billion investment underlined ADQ’s commitment to the industrial partnership. He added that by leveraging the expertise and portfolio of ADQ, the partnership will unlock opportunities for investment in industrial sectors and develop an integrated industrial infrastructure that will cement the UAE’s position as a leading industrial nation.
In a separate statement, ADQ said that Emirates Development Bank will back the venture, by providing a wide range of flexible financing options for companies based in the UAE who wish to take advantage of the new opportunities presented by the partnership funded by ADQ.
Chief Executive of EDB, Ahmed Al Naqbi said that the partnership was testimony to the UAE’s goal to transform the industrial sector into a long-term sustainable growth engine, by adopting new sectors that will respond to the needs of the future.
Details of the Industrial Partnership for Sustainable Economic Growth were revealed at a joint conference attended by Jordan’s Prime Minister Bisher Al Khasawneh and Egyptian Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly, held in Abu Dhabi.
PM Madbouly said in a statement that the partnership that was signed reflected the practical execution of the pursuit of Arab integration, which was a goal in the minds of the founders of the Arab League in the 1940’s.
The three-way partnership is an inspirational model for turning the current economic and geopolitical global circumstances from challenges into opportunities, he noted.
The Egyptian Prime Minister said that the initiative was a positive move aimed at integrating the economies of the Arab countries.
Mr. Madbouly said that the economy of Egypt was expected to expand 6.2 percent in the 21-22 fiscal year, marking the best economic growth rate during the period.
Despite the global crisis presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, the industrial sector in Egypt had grown hugely, issuing 50,000 new licences for factories that created 2.5 million new jobs during this period, Mr, Madbouly said in the statement. He added that non-oil exports grew by 20 percent in 2021 to more than USD32 billion. In the first four months of 2022, non-oil exports grew 21 percent, highlighting the strength of the industrial sector and the robust economy of the country.
In recent weeks, the Egyptian government has announced a slew of tax and non-tax incentives to attract FDI into the economy, with a special emphasis on renewable energy, clean energy, advanced technologies and integrated industries.
The Prime Minister of JOrdan said that the partnership will have a deep strategic impact on the three countries, and will ensure the continued, sustainable flow of commodities without price instability or bottlenecks.
The Prime Minister further noted that the venture will create economic diversification, reduce the cost of imports, and create new job opportunities for the residents of Jordan.
Jordan’s industrial sector, which is undergoing rapid development, has already contributed 24 percent to the country’s GDP, and attracted 70 percent of FDI. The sector comprises almost 90 percent of exports, and employs 21 percent of the total workforce.