Industrial investment in the UAE provided more than 230,000 jobs in 2004
Investment in the manufacturing sector of the UAE in 2004 grew by Dh19.3 billion to Dh82.7 billion, reflecting an increase of 44.3 percent from the previous year.
Assistant Under-Secretary for Industrial Affairs in the Ministry of Finance and Industry, Jamal Nasser Lootah, revealed that the number of industries grew by 144 over the last decade, reaching 3,036 in 2004, according to Gulf News.
Lootah said that significant growth had been experienced in the processing industries, and that their total production value increased from Dh4.2 billion in 1980 to Dh40.1 billion in 2003, reflecting a ten-fold rise.
Lootah added that industrial development in the UAE is aiming for diversification in an attempt to become less dependent on its oil industry.
"The solution is to extend the base of domestic manufacturing and production, diversify the sources of national income, increase the participation of industry in domestic production, and expand the production base," he said.
Investment in processing industries in 2004 reached Dh63.4 billion according to Lootah, 89.9 percent of this amount reflects national investment of Dh57 billion, while GCC investment stands at Dh1.8 billion, or 2.8 percent or the total sum, and foreign investment reflects 7.3 percent, or Dh4.6 billion.
Such investment has provided some 231,275 jobs, while there was an increase of 8.7 percent of jobs, or 18,578 in 2004. Of this number, 1.6 percent are UAE nationals, (3,697 workers), 0.3 percent are GCC nationals, (667 workers), and 98.1 percent are foreigners (226,911 workers), Lootah specified.