The UAE is targeting a 7% growth in its economic sector for 2024. This ambition was expressed by the minister at the Economy Middle East Summit 2024 

 “The various global challenges encountered over time have put our resilience to the test. Nonetheless, our objective is to achieve a 7% economic growth rate in 2024.” 

The UAE aspires to expand its economy and increase its gross domestic product to AED 3 trillion by 2030. The country experienced an 8% growth in 2022. The minister anticipates that the economy will see a 5% growth in 2024. 

Addressing the current economic climate, Abdulla Bin Touq Al Marri, the Minister of Economy, stated during the Economy Middle East Summit held at the Abu Dhabi Global Market: “The recent trends in inflation and interest rates, which have both declined, need to be addressed. It is now important to devise an economic strategy that takes into account the prevailing rate levels. 

Previously, the Central Bank of the UAE had forecasted an economic expansion of 4.2% for the year 2024, with expectations of a further increase to 5.2% in 2025. Meanwhile, the World Bank updated its growth projections for the UAE last month, estimating a 3.9% growth for 2024 and a 4.1% growth for the following year. 

The conference centered on strategies for adapting to the international economic environment post-2024, highlighting the economic prospects of the Mena region in the face of evolving global dynamics. 

Al Marri highlighted that the UAE has achieved significant progress in broadening its economic base, transitioning to an adaptable economic framework rooted in knowledge and innovation. Consequently, the non-oil segment now represents 74% of the nation’s overall GDP. 

The United Arab Emirates is steadfastly creating a nurturing environment for business operations and economic ventures. It is crafting adaptable and competitive laws and economic strategies to boost its appeal to international investors by fostering an optimal economic atmosphere for investors, capital holders, and business founders. Key advancements include allowing complete foreign ownership of businesses, updating visa and residency frameworks, and launching independent work and extended residency options. These initiatives support the nation’s resilience to global economic shifts and affirm its status as a premier hub for commerce and investment. 

Roberta Gatti, the World Bank’s lead economist for the Middle East and North Africa, holds a positive view for the year 2025, predicting a lift on restrictions in oil production. She emphasizes that governments in the MENA region must strive for a harmonious public-private sector dynamic as a fundamental move towards formalizing the economy. 

Gatti observes that the region is reverting to its pre-COVID-19 pattern of modest expansion amid a globally slowing economy for the third year in a row. She projects that the MENA region’s GDP will grow to 2.7% in 2024, up from 1.9% in 2023. However, regional conflicts and escalating debt burdens make this forecast highly unpredictable. Particularly, oil-importing nations in the MENA region are grappling with debt levels that are 50% above the average for emerging markets and developing economies worldwide. These countries are facing a risky future as they accumulate debt. 

For nations exporting oil, the unavoidable lies are vital in diversifying their economies and revenues. This necessity stems from a fundamental shift in the global oil market and an increasing inclination towards renewable energy sources. 

Naima Al Falasi, holding a senior role in portfolio strategy at Mubadala, highlighted the transformative effect of Generative AI and AI across various sectors. She noted that these technologies are projected to generate a significant economic impact, estimated at $23.5 billion within the GCC’s economy. 

Dr. Mahmoud Mohieldin, the UN’s Special Envoy for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and an Executive Director at the IMF, pointed out that according to recent analysis by the World Bank and IMF, there is considerable room for improvement in the economic revival. He remarked that the region’s growth rate lags behind the global average, indicating resilience in worldwide growth but an increasing disparity between developed nations and others. 

Chris Williamson, the principal business economist at S&P Global Market Intelligence, mentioned during a panel at a conference that supply chain challenges are emerging in the region due to the situation in the Red Sea. He explained that, typically, such issues would trigger inflation, but the presence of numerous suppliers in the area is creating a counterbalance, preventing prices from escalating as expected. 

Read more: khaleejtimes.com/

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