Further reinforcing the growing importance of Ras Al Khaimah as a hub of business activity, the Ras Al Khaimah Free Trade Zone (RAK FTZ), one of the fastest-growing and most cost-effective free trade zones in the UAE, is hosting top-level trade delegations from various parts of the world this week.
The delegations visiting RAK FTZ include a high-level trade team from the German state of North Rhine Westphalia, led by its Minister of Economy; a trade and business team from the Indian Chamber of Commerce, Kolkata; and a senior business delegation from Luxembourg led by H.R.H. Hereditary Grand Duke Prince Guillaume of Luxembourg.
The spurt of business teams making a beeline to RAK FTZ further emphasises the growing interest among businessmen from across the globe to set up their businesses in the free zone, and highlights its strategic importance and salient features unmatched in the region.
In his comments on the various business delegations, HH Sheikh Faisal Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Chairman of RAK FTZ, said: “We are extremely privileged to showcase our world-class facilities, services and investor-friendly environment on offer at RAK FTZ to the various trade teams from India, Germany and Luxembourg.”
He added: “In the changed global business environment, strategic presence in the Middle East has become absolutely paramount and we at RAK FTZ offer not only unmatched benefits and facilities, but also a strategic hub-and-bespoke destination for businesses who wish to expand not only in the UAE, but also to the rest of the Middle East and Northern Africa. We definitely see vast potential in any future cooperation that may arise out of these visits.”
German business visit
A business delegation, comprising top company representatives from the German state of North Rhine Westphalia (NRW) and led by HE Harry K. Voigtsberger, Minister of Economy, was also hosted by the RAK FTZ this week.
The visiting delegation was also received by His Highness Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Faisal Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Chairman of RAK FTZ.
During the visit, the German team visited the RAK FTZ Business Park; and the top management of the free zone showcased the key facilities and services on offer, and highlighted the salient advantages for prospective NRW businesses to set up operations at the free zone.
MoU with Indian Chamber of Commerce
The Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC) delegation, which was on a two-day visit, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with RAK FTZ aimed at boosting cooperation in commercial business exchanges and Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) from Indian state of West Bengal to Ras Al Khaimah.
The MoU, which was signed by Maryam Al Murshedi Al Shehhi, RAK FTZ Deputy Director General and D Sengupta, Joint Director, ICC / Dr Rajeev Singh, Director General, ICC, aims to boost investment from Eastern India to Ras Al Khaimah and will provide a major impetus for investors from West Bengal to expand operations in the region using RAK FTZ as a base.
The MoU also accords privilege partnership status to the ICC to facilitate business expansion of its member-companies in the region. This is the first MoU of its kind signed by ICC with any free zone in the UAE.
In comments on the MoU and the visit, Rajendra Mundhra, Senior Vice President, ICC, said: “We are privileged to be signing this MoU with RAK FTZ which will go a long way in boosting investments from West Bengal into Ras Al Khaimah and beyond the region. We see a lot of potential in business expansion, what with world-class facilities on offer at RAK FTZ, and the strategic location it offers for expansion into a potent market across the Middle East and Africa. The MoU with RAK FTZ gives us a huge opportunity to grow and we are looking at mutually-beneficial partnership in the years to come.”
Dr Rajeev Singh, Director General, ICC, said: “Our fact-finding mission to RAK FTZ has been a great success, which will both support the growth in RAK and region and deliver benefits to our member-companies. This visit demonstrates our commitment to develop trade opportunities in the international business arena, and support our objective to continue to identify and drive areas for development and growth.”
The delegation, which included top officials from various companies from different sectors, also visited the Business Park, Industrial Park, Technology Park and the manufacturing units at RAK FTZ. They also interacted with the clients in the technology and industrial parks. The delegation also included two top journalists from prestigious newspapers based in Kolkata.
The visit from the ICC is a culmination of various initiatives and road shows organized by RAK FTZ India Liaison office in Kolkata over the last couple of years which generated a huge interest among businessmen from the Eastern part of India to explore opportunities in RAK.
Luxembourg trade delegation
A high-level business delegation from Luxembourg, led by H.R.H. Hereditary Grand Duke Prince Guillaume of Luxembourg, also met with top management of RAK FTZ today, who made a presentation on the key facilities and services on offer at the free zone, and highlighted the salient advantages for Luxembourg businesses in setting up operations at the free zone.
The delegation, which was on a one-day visit to Ras Al Khaimah, was impressed with the facilities and salient investment advantages on offer in the emirate.
Summing up the visits from various countries, Sheikh Faisal added: “These visits from India, Luxembourg and German state of NRW will help us widen our reach as we look to strengthen our positioning as a business hub geared at helping SMEs connect to emerging market economies.”
With optimistic plans to assist and encourage entrepreneurs, especially the UAE nationals, the multi-award winning RAK FTZ continues to live up to its reputation as the ‘Home of Business' in the region.