UAE: Digital Economy to Lead the Recovery Phase Post COVID-19

Published May 13th, 2020 - 07:00 GMT
UAE: Digital Economy to Lead the Recovery Phase Post COVID-19
The global economic trends for the post-Covid-19 era will give rise to a new global supply chain and new business patterns. (Shutterstock)

The UAE private sector should be prepared for the evolving digital economy phase that will drive the recovery from the Covid-inflicted setback, the UAE Minister of Economy Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri said on Tuesday, while stressing the need for striking a balance between health and economy by easing lockdown measures gradually.

The minister said the UAE has developed a systematic response plan for economic sustainability and business continuity and asserted that the future of the economy would "rely on encouraging national industries, securing the provision of necessities, exploring the diversification of industrial imports, and aligning economic policies with global changes in the short and long term."

"The UAE economy, which has strong fundamentals that enhance its ability to overcome crises and achieve leadership, has a competitive resilient economy that is linked with other global markets and not immune to global repercussions," Mansouri said.

He called for a gradual opening of the economy and businesses, while adhering to the precautionary measures and providing stimulus plans as part of a long-term plan to accelerate recovery and advance growth.

He said the economic strategy framework consists of two main phases. The first one is the short-term phase, which includes the gradual opening of the economy and businesses while adhering to the precautionary measures, providing massive stimulus plans of total Dh282.5 billion to the sectors most affected by the crisis, supporting SMEs, and linking the funds to beneficiaries through effective schemes and plans. The second phase is the long-term stimulus package to accelerate recovery, advance growth, transform challenges into opportunities to achieve sustainable economic growth, and encourage investment in sectors with high potential, most notably digital economy.

During a session entitled "Implications of Covid-19 on the UAE: risks and opportunities," the minister asserted that the future of the economy would rely on encouraging national industries, securing the provision of necessities, exploring the diversification of industrial imports, and aligning economic policies with global changes in the short and long term. "The global economic trends for the post-Covid-19 era will give rise to a new global supply chain and new business patterns with a more active role for governments in the national economy, and will also lead to allocating substantial investments for digital infrastructure, 5G networks, smart cities, smart services, health, education and trade."

Al Mansoori said the government would continue supporting startups and tech companies to ensure its sustainability as a key pillar of the national economy.

He noted that some sectors have been hard hit by the crises including tourism, aviation, petrochemicals, retail and real estate, while other sectors have grown such as technology, internet services, digital entertainment, e-commerce and food business.


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