Sharjah Chamber to strengthen trade ties with Uganda and Kenya - GulfToday

Sharjah Chamber to strengthen trade ties with Uganda and Kenya


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The Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) will dispatch a trade mission to Uganda and Kenya on Monday to bolster economic and investment cooperation between Sharjah and the two African nations.

Led by the Sharjah Exports Development Centre (SEDC), the mission is set to explore ways to further development and foster stronger ties as part of the Chamber’s commitment to supporting the local business community, enhancing their activities, and facilitating the growth of industrial and commercial exports from Sharjah.

Abdullah Sultan Al Owais, Chairman of SCCI, is leading the delegation, accompanied by several members of the Chamber’s Board of Directors, including Abdulaziz Mohammed Shattaf, Assistant Director-General of the Communication and Business Sector at the Sharjah Chamber. The delegation also includes officials from the Chamber and the Centre, as well as prominent businessmen and representatives from major industrial and commercial entities in Sharjah.

The trade mission’s journey will commence with the first leg taking place in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, where the Sharjah-Kenya Business Forum was organised. The mission will then proceed to Uganda, where it will hold business forums bringing together officials and leaders from chambers of commerce and industry.

These business gatherings will explore avenues for establishing new partnerships and will feature events and meetings with business communities from the UAE, Kenya, and Uganda, with the overarching goal of highlighting investment opportunities and fostering joint economic collaborations.

Abdullah Sultan Al Owais emphasised that this East African mission aims to support the UAE’s strategic vision of enhancing its global trade and investment reach, as well as widening its network of international trade allies to foster business development.

Al Owais stressed the importance of the mission not only in identifying opportunities in emerging African markets but also in enabling national companies and investors to establish new collaborations and partnerships with their counterparts across Africa, thereby boosting exports and expanding business operations into new geographical areas.

He highlighted that the mission’s agenda is packed with a series of meetings with officials from economic institutions, chambers of commerce, investment promotion agencies, export development and promotion centers, and other relevant entities representing the business community in the target markets.

Running until November 10, the trade mission takes place against the backdrop of flourishing trade relations between the UAE, Uganda, and Nairobi. In 2022, Uganda’s imports from the UAE amounted to $810,529, witnessing an annual growth rate of 20% over the past five years.

Meanwhile, exports from Uganda to the UAE surged from $300 million in 2009 to $1,065,910 billion in 2021. Nairobi’s imports from the UAE reached $3,458,269 in 2022, marking a 47% increase since 2021, and exports from Nairobi to the UAE also saw substantial growth, climbing from $315,268 million in 2021 to $373,679 million in 2022.

The Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry recently received a high-level delegation from the Ministry of Education and Research of the Republic of Estonia, discussing ways to strengthen bilateral relations, especially in the educational sector.

During the meeting held at the SCCI’s headquarters, both sides discussed the prospects of organizing joint events to provide an opportunity for educational institutions from the two countries to exchange experiences and explore investment opportunities.

Abdullah Sultan Al Owais and Kristina Kallas, Minister of Education and Research of Estonia, attended the meeting.

Also present were HE Mohammad Ahmed Amin Al Awadi, Director-General of SCCI; Abdulaziz Mohammed Shattaf, Assistant Director-General of the Communication and Business Sector at the Sharjah Chamber; and Fatima Khalifa Al-Muqrab, Director of the International Relations Department in the Chamber, as well as other senior officials from both sides.

During the gathering, the two sides explored avenues of bolstering collaboration, focusing on increasing the involvement of educational institutions in Estonia, such as colleges, universities, and institutes, in educational events and exhibitions organised by Expo Centre Sharjah.

Welcoming the Estonian delegation, Abdullah Sultan Al Owais emphasised that the UAE in general and Sharjah in particular share historically strong relations with Estonia.

He emphasized the importance of the meeting, describing it as a platform to exchange insights and experiences in the education sector, thus reinforcing cooperation between the Sharjah Chamber and the Ministry of Education and Research in Estonia.

Al Owais further highlighted the substantial economic contribution of the education sector to Sharjah’s GDP, which reached approximately Dhs3.5 billion in 2021, marking a 4.8% increase compared to 2020 and a 9% growth compared to 2019.

For his part, HE Al Awadi stressed that the Sharjah Chamber is making every possible effort to support the educational sector through specialized initiatives such as the Sharjah Chamber Award for Innovators.

He added that the Chamber is committed to backing educational events hosted by Expo Centre Sharjah, particularly the International Education Show. Al Awadi urged the Estonian delegation to encourage their universities, colleges, and institutes to participate actively in educational exhibitions hosted in the Emirate of Sharjah.

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