New Dubai Chamber survey points to improving business confidence - GulfToday

New Dubai Chamber survey points to improving business confidence


A scenic view of the Sustainability Pavilion at the Expo 2020 venue in Dubai.

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

Dubai’s business environment is expected to see positive momentum in the third quarter of 2021 as confidence among companies and investors improves ahead of Expo 2020 Dubai, a newly released survey from Dubai Chamber has predicted.

The Business Leaders’ Outlook for Q3-2021 found that 66% of respondents said they expect to see better business conditions during the quarter, compared to 51% who said the same in the previous quarter. At the same time, 66% of business leaders surveyed were more optimistic about the business environment, compared to 48% in the second quarter.

Business leaders’ expectations for factors affecting business conditions in Q3-2021 have improved significantly across the board compared to Q2-2021; with the most notable improvements seen in the “financial transactions” category.

Around 57% of business leaders said they expect a recovery in oil prices to positively affect the business environment in the third quarter, while 62% of business leaders said global restrictions on trade and travel would be a risk impacting business conditions in the emirate.

The results marked the highest readings of the survey since the last quarter of 2014. The increase in confidence is due to several important factors such as pro-active approach of government, growing domestic demand, economic stimulus initiatives and progress of vaccination drive among key factors behind positive attitudes among business leaders.

The survey found that SMEs, in particular, were more optimistic about Dubai’s economy in the short term compared to large companies serving regional and global markets, while debt collection, late payments, strong competition in prices and the high cost of raw materials were identified as key challenges and risks that could potentially impact the economic situation.

Picture used for illustrative purpose only.

Commenting on the survey,  Hamad Buamim, President & CEO of Dubai Chamber, said the findings demonstrate Dubai’s success in minimising the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic through a series of policies, initiatives and measures that have ensured a favourable business environment and addressed new challenges created by the pandemic. He noted that Expo 2020 Dubai is expected to fast track Dubai’s economic recovery and boost the emirate’s appeal among foreign companies and investors.

Meanwhile, Google and Dubai Chamber have recently teamed-up to launch ‘Business Online Presence’, a comprehensive digital solution designed to help businesses in the UAE manage their online presence, maximise visibility and attract new customers.

The new solution was launched during a webinar organised today by Dubai Chamber in collaboration with Google. The virtual event was attended by members of business community in Dubai, including representatives from business groups and business councils.

Members of the Dubai Chamber can now access the ‘Business Online Presence’ dashboard to set and verify their business profiles across single or multiple locations on Google Search and Maps. Those online profiles feature essential business details such as opening hours, contact details, address and photos. Businesses can also post timely offers and promotional packages during special seasons.

The tool can generate a customized total score for each business’ online readiness and reputation management. Members of the Dubai Chamber, whether small or medium-sized enterprises, can use the dashboard to standardize brand experience and engage with customers through online reviews, access timely insights like their store visits and identify operational challenges faster. Through this program, registered businesses can also access the ‘Maharat Min Google’ training program to learn the digital skills needed to grow online.

Hamad Buamim, President and CEO of Dubai Chamber, described the dashboard as a versatile and reliable tool that helps SMEs seamlessly manage their online presence, reputation, and activities from a single platform. The platform is designed around the needs of local businesses and helps them easily reach new categories of customers who are actively seeking out specific services and products.”

Buamim added that the initiative supports the Chamber’s ongoing efforts to accelerate digital transformation of business in Dubai, expand the emirate’s digital economy and enhance its economic competitiveness on a global level.

Lino Cattaruzzi, Google’s Managing Director in MENA, commented: “The pandemic has truly exposed the critical role digital tools can play in a business’ ability to navigate through challenging times - with a particular impact in certain sectors like retail and tourism. For this reason, we are very happy to continue our collaboration with the Dubai Chamber which has started in 2018, and together offer a tangible solution that helps SMEs across the country grow their online presence and learn digital skills to successfully scale their businesses and reach more customers.”

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