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Economics & Development | Global Arab Network
UK Minister leads 70 British SMEs delegation to UAE
Global Arab Network - - Reda Darwish
Tuesday, 09 March 2010 10:14
UK Minister for Trade, Investment and Small Business Lord Davies will lead a delegation of up to 70 British SMEs to the UAE this week, the UK’s 14th biggest export market, for a two-day mission aimed at increasing business and partnership opportunities.

The delegation covers a range of sectors including education, mass transport, security, power and water. The companies will spend a day in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Despite the challenging global economic conditions, UK exports of goods to the UAE held steady at around £3.6 billion in 2009.

Ahead of the visit Lord Davies said: “The UAE is a hugely important market to the UK, it’s our number one trading partner in the Middle East with ambitious diversification and investment plans. The size and scope of the delegation indicate the UK’s enthusiasm to explore new business opportunities.

“At the end of last year, the UK and UAE Governments made a commitment to increasing our bilateral trade to £12 billion by 2015, a 60 per cent increase from current levels. I hope this visit moves us a step closer to achieving our new trade targets.”

During the visit, Lord Davies will also visit DP World, the company behind the £1.5 billion London Gateway port project that will generate 36,000 jobs in the UK and when completed will be the size of two Cities of London.

In Abu Dhabi he will also host a reception for aspiring female entrepreneurs in the Middle East. Yesterday was International Women’s Day in the UK.

UAE & UK fact

o UK exports of goods to the UAE were worth  £3.6 billion in 2009.
o UK imports of goods from the UAE were worth £1.1 billion in 2009.
o UK exports of goods to the Middle East and North Africa were worth £12.7 billion in 2009.
o UK imports of goods from the Middle East and North Africa were worth £7.5 billion in 2009.
o The UK is the leading international investor in the UAE, its 14th largest export market in the world.

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