UAE to revise mining laws in push to develop non-oil economy

Published October 26th, 2016 - 10:00 GMT
The UAE is eagerly awaiting suggestions on best practice and the ideal regulatory framework that would allow its mining industry to grow and thrive even in difficult times. (Shutterstock)
The UAE is eagerly awaiting suggestions on best practice and the ideal regulatory framework that would allow its mining industry to grow and thrive even in difficult times. (Shutterstock)

The UAE is in the early stages of developing a mining law that will help attract investment in the industry, the country’s energy minister told Gulf News.

“We are [working on] the draft form [of the mining law],” Suhail Mohammad Faraj Al Mazroui said on the sidelines of a mining industry conference in Dubai. “We need to get all of the different emirates to endorse it.”

He called on technical experts, manufacturers and policymakers to submit their recommendations to the government.

Earlier, during the conference, Al Mazroui told delegates that the UAE was eagerly awaiting suggestions on best practice and the ideal regulatory framework that would allow the industry to grow and thrive even in difficult times.

He also advised countries to make use of the prevailing stability in commodity markets to consolidate and cut costs.

“We have noticed that the majority of commodity markets have stabilised... but the advantage of such times is to allow us to consolidate, and to allow us to be smarter and... cut costs, [as well as] to try to be an investment destination,” Al Mazroui said.

Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries have been trying to align on the laws needed to incentivise investors and ensure that the industry thrives, even when markets stay down.

The minister said the UAE has also been aggressively pursuing the development of the non-oil economy.

“We have managed to minimise the dependence on oil to around 25 per cent,” Al Mazroui said. “[While] we are blessed with oil as the main source of income, we went from being fully dependent on it to enabling new industries in the UAE — non-oil related industries.”

The UAE’s non-oil trade has been on a growth trajectory, with non-oil trade reaching Dh535.7 billion in the first half of the year — up 3 per cent from the same period last year.

Al Mazroui urged other countries to exploit their mineral resources to improve their economic situation

By Siddesh Suresh Mayenkar


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