UAE Minister of Economy Abdulla bin Touq said that the country’s economy is likely to grow by more than 4 percent this year as the country continues to roll out initiatives to help it recover from the coronavirus pandemic-induced slowdown.
The latest forecast is higher than the Central Bank’s assessment in December, which put growth anticipations at 2.5 percent in 2021.
As part of the plans to boost growth, the UAE will be seeking $150 billion of inward foreign investment over the next nine years and it aims to be among the 10 biggest global investment destinations by 2030, bin Touq said in an interview with Bloomberg television on Sunday.
UAE economy will attract investments from countries including Russia, Australia, China and the UK, the Minister said. It also plans to bolster its economic partnerships with South Korea, Indonesia, Kenya, Ethiopia, India, Israel and Turkey, officials said.
The UAE introduced initiatives in the past year to help the economy recover from the coronavirus pandemic, including a Dh388bn support package, as well as a Dh50bn Targeted Economic Support Scheme (Tess), to boost liquidity in the financial and banking sector.
The Tess programme, which offered zero-cost collateral funding to banks to encourage lending to the broader economy, has been extended to the end of June 2022.
The UAE also unveiled two visa categories, a Green visa and a freelancer visa, to attract and retain skilled workers as part of the measures announced on Sunday.
The government will also allow people who have lost their jobs to remain in the country for up to 180 days.