Sunday 28 November 2021 - 9:40:28 am

Sultan Al Jaber emphasises importance of GCC cooperation to enhance performance of region’s industrial sector

  • وزير الصناعة والتكنولوجيا المتقدمة يؤكد حرص الإمارات على التعاون لتعزيز أداء القطاع الصناعي الخليجي
  • وزير الصناعة والتكنولوجيا المتقدمة يؤكد حرص الإمارات على التعاون لتعزيز أداء القطاع الصناعي الخليجي

Abu Dhabi-UAE: 20th October, 2021 (WAM) -- Dr. Sultan bin Ahmed Al Jaber, UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, expressed the UAE’s desire to deepen cooperation, coordination and knowledge exchange in support of the GCC’s economy, especially in the efforts to integrate advanced technology, innovation and 4IR technologies into its industrial sector. Dr. Al Jaber also commended the cooperation between GCC countries as they prepared for a post-pandemic world, which ought to remain a top priority for joint Gulf action in the upcoming period.

His remarks came during the 48th meeting of the GCC Industrial Cooperation Committee in the Kingdom of Bahrain. The delegates noted that the industrial sector will be a key focus due to its significance to economic diversification, particularly the sectors that incorporate advanced technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and the internet of things (IoT). The discussions also focused on the development of regulations, policies and laws, and the support for local products.

Dr. Sultan Al Jaber said: "In line with the directives of our wise leadership, we always seek to enhance cooperation and coordination with our brothers in the GCC to achieve mutually beneficial results. There is positive indicators point to growth in the GCC’s industrial sector, through providing support to the industry, increased innovation and the adoption of advanced technology applications and 4IR solutions. There has also been considerable coordination in priority industrial sectors to enhance their overall performance and global competitiveness."

He explained that the national efforts to develop the UAE’s industrial sector through the UAE Industry 4.0 program are designed to increase industrial productivity by 30% and add AED25 billion to the GDP in the next 10 years. The program is a key pillar of UAE’s national industrial strategy - Operation 300Bn, which is in line with the new phase of growth and development for the UAE in the next fifty years, that will enhance its position as an incubator of innovative ideas and future industries.

The minister pointed out that the Covid-19 pandemic accelerated efforts to improve collaboration across the GCC and develop future strategies. This comes in parallel with current efforts to update the GCC Unified Industrial Strategy document in a way that enhances industrial integration, accelerates the development and implementation of programs in strategic industries, and utilises each country’s strengths.

Future opportunities.

He expressed his hope for more coordination between member states in the pursuit of common interests, especially in the areas of knowledge exchange, training, and research and development. His Excellency also noted with the available capabilities among the Gulf countries that supports trade exchange between GCC states and to encourage the private sector to boost both the efficiency of its operations and the quality of its products, especially in light of opportunities presented by the applications of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

The minister explained that achieving comprehensive industrial development in the GCC states will reflect in enhanced production efficiencies and higher quality outputs. It will also have positive social effects, from enhancing safety and security to improving services, developing economic opportunities, and increasing the sector’s contribution to GDP, as well as promoting investment opportunities in priority industrial sectors.

The meeting’s agenda included defining a set of Gulf priorities in a post-Covid world, with the industrial sector being key to economic diversification, focusing on technology-dependent industries, developing joint systems and policies for the industrial sector – including supporting innovation centers and encouraging the establishment of joint industrial projects – and supporting local products by giving them priority in government procurement procedures.

The meeting also included an agreement to issue Gulf regulations and programs that contribute to the expansion of national projects that add value to members’ economies, develop future plans for manufacturing during health pandemics, enhance cooperation between Gulf government entities related to industry, and to exchange experiences, information and training.

Within the same context, last week witnessed the holding of the 40th preparatory meeting for the Undersecretaries of the Ministries of Industry at the headquarters of the General Secretariat of the Gulf Cooperation Council, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The attendees were briefed on the vision to strengthen joint Gulf action. Their recommendations included joining the Gulf Organization for Industrial Consulting as a member of the Industrial Development Committee, and for the topic of the "Fourth Industrial Revolution" to the Gulf Organization for Industrial Consulting to be considered for inclusion in the updated Unified Industrial Strategy.

The committee also agreed on a framework for enhancing the role of the industrial sector in GCC to promote industrial development at national and Gulf levels.

WAM/Hatem Mohamed/Hassan Bashir