Impending effect of UAE 2020 Expo on the private sector

UAE 2020 Expo is expected to boost the UAE’s economy with new opportunities across the region and the entire world. The government’s planned spending of Dh14.7 billion for UAE 2020 Expo is a strong driver of UAE’s growth and is anticipated to propel real economic growth across various industries.

Economic Growth

In a report released by Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, combined growth of all emirates is placed in excess of 3.5 per cent from 2017-2020, with non-oil private sector picking up a faster pace with increased social infrastructure spending resulting to increase in consumption and investment.

Tourism

The planned diverse accommodation offerings for the high-profile event could be a catalyst for the UAE’s tourism industry growth. No longer will the UAE be known as a destination for five-star hotels but also for high quality yet affordable accommodations to cater to visitors on a budget. This would place UAE’s tourism industry an inch closer to its vision to attract millions more visitors with economic benefits expected to trickle across other emirates, which are also focusing on their tourism infrastructures, thus strongly attracting inflow of investments.

Health tourism is poised to benefit from the mega event, even after its conclusion on April 2021. Banking on increase in tourism, Dubai aims to ensure sustained growth for health tourism via its DHA Strategy 2013-2025 that promotes Dubai as the preferred destination for health tourism.

Aviation

Economic benefits from UAE Expo 2020 will also be felt within the aviation sector which is poised to accommodate close to 100 million passengers by 2020. The readiness of Dubai to host Expo 2020 includes infrastructure developments specifically roads and highways to provide strategic access from Al Maktoum International Airport to hotels and to Expo 2020 Jebel Ali site which is adjacent to the airport.

Real Estate

With infrastructure development picking up speed given Dubai’s infra spending increase by 27 per cent, the construction sector gained traction with Expo 2020-related construction projects. An increase in the construction sector spells a growth trend for the real estate sector. In the coming years nearing the 2020 Expo, the value of residential and commercial real estate in Dubai is expected to rise.

Retail

The retail sector will undoubtedly have accelerated growth with Expo 2020 organizers having projected the total economic output across Dubai to reach Dh141 billion and job generation of 277,000.

The expected number of tourists and anticipated increase in spending, combined with Dubai’s competitive Gross Leasable Area (GLA), a surge in retail sector is expected. On top of this, UAE retail advertising spending will skyrocket directly resulting from improved spending patterns within the consumer-driven sectors.

Investment

Banking and financial institutions would secure significant gains handling local and foreign investments generated from UAE 2020 Expo. This would cement UAE’s reputation as an investment hub with improved investment laws in line with international business needs.

Private sector expectations from UAE 2020 Expo remain positive. For investors, it means sound business opportunity. For residents and workers, it simply means more jobs and better salaries.

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