Bahrain's business reputation abroad remains intact and more financial support for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) will be offered in the future, a top business leader said yesterday.
The country holds a very good reputation abroad in the business sector and remains very attractive to foreign investors, said Bahrain Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) chairman Dr Essam Fakhro. He was speaking at a Press conference at the elections media centre in the Isa Cultural Centre, Juffair, as part of a series of talks to mark the day.
"On a BCCI level, groups of businessmen are planning visits to the US, UK, Germany and Italy as well as Asian countries such as Turkey," he said. "The objective is to clarify the situation and confirm that Bahrain is a safe place and attractive for international and local business, and that it is also a gateway to the Gulf."
More will be allocated to aid the trade sector, in particular small and medium businesses which were the worst affected by the political unrest, he said. "We intend to make banks review their policies and offer better loans for SMEs, as they were the most harmed during the crisis and we must never allow that to happen again," he said. "From now on we are more dedicated to helping such businesses and provide all forms of financial support in the future."
Dr Fakhro also commented on the events of Friday when protesters entered Bahrain City Centre and terrorised shoppers. "The BCCI and the newly formed parliament are working together for national unity and peace," he said.
"There are more civilised ways of expressing your opinion. This has had a negative effect on Bahrain, scaring people in a public place. "We should move on from this, as this is not a solution for the people of Bahrain and these people who did this are trying to hinder those who wish for peace."