The United Arab Emirates is looking to accelerate economic growth as it seeks to double its gross domestic product to over $800b by the end of the decade.
“The focus is to grow by 7 per cent,” Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri, the country’s economy minister, said in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “We need to double our economy” so it reaches Dhs3tn ($817bn) in output by the end of 2030, he said.
The oil-rich country saw its economy expand almost 8 per cent in 2022, thanks in part to higher crude prices and production. This year, the International Monetary Fund projects GDP growth will slow to 3.5 per cent.
The Gulf country is seeking bilateral trade deals and partnerships to achieve its goals and is confident it has the policies in place to navigate any potential challenges such as slower Chinese growth or disruptions to the global financial system, according to the minister.
The UAE, OPEC’s third-largest producer, has been pushing to develop its position as a global hub for business and finance, especially as it faces growing regional competition from larger neighbor Saudi Arabia. It’s inked trade deals worth billions of dollars over the past two years with countries including India, Indonesia and Turkey.
This week, during Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit to Abu Dhabi, the UAE pledged to ramp up financial help for Turkey with deals that could be worth more than $50bn.
The financial commitments include the signing of several memoranda of understanding, buying $8.5bn of bonds and a $3bn pact by Abu Dhabi wealth fund ADQ with Turkey’s Export Credit Bank to finance companies planning to export goods to the UAE and other markets.
The two countries are still working on finalizing the details, which will “come in very shortly and very soon,” Al Marri said.