Total investments in Abu Dhabi's industrial port and city project will be $24 billion (Dh88bn), this was announced yesterday.
The project is expected to form nine per cent of Abu Dhabi's Gross Domestic Product and 80 per cent of the government revenue, said Maqita Al Ahbabi, Senior Coordinator of Project Development Strategy and Development, Abu Dhabi Port Company. It will cater to 300, 000 residents and will create 150,000 jobs, she said.
The project will be executed over several phases. The area of the first phase extends on an area of 50 square kilometres and in the second phase it will have 100 square kilometres.
The first phase will include the inception of Khalifa Port, while the other phases will include industrial sectors, like aluminum, petrochemical and clean technology industries, she said in her lecture during the third session of Abu Dhabi Economic Forum which discussed "Investment Opportunities in Abu Dhabi and Partnership Strategy".
Al Ahbabi added the first phase will end in 2010, which will see the construction of a port in the shape of an island in the sea.
Work in the port is going on without delay and the last two years saw big developments in the construction of the port with the total investment in the port's construction so far reaching $5.1bn.
"Abu Dhabi aims to find strong partnerships to operate the port and Khalifa Industrial City. Abu Dhabi Ports Company set many sectors for partnership in the port and industrial city project, including industrial areas, infrastructure, warehouses and commercial services. Abu Dhabi has a long-term strategy to create an economic balance to reduce dependence on oil sector. We expect the emirate will hit an annual growth rate of 8.5 per cent in the non-oil sector. Khalifa Industrial City will have a big participation in reaching this growth rate."
Mohamad Al Qamzi, Senior Vice-President, Abu Dhabi Basic Industries Corporation (Adbic), spoke in the same session about Abu Dhabi Ploymers Park project. He said the project produced 140 million tonnes of plastic products in 2007 and is expected to produce 170 million tonnes in 2010. "We attempt to raise the project's capacity by 10 per cent a year up to 2015," he said.
Al Qamzi said foreign investments in this important industrial sector are on the rise and the value of investments currently is $2bn.
"We have many characteristics which push for the increase of foreign investments. The most important of which is the low prices of energy and easy obtaining of raw materials with competitive prices," he said.
Khalfan Saeed Al Kaabi, Chairman of Ascorp Holdings, said Abu Dhabi's economy is one of the strong economies which are immune from the international financial crisis as a result of the leadership's wisdom which supported all components of the economy throughout last year. He said consolidated economic performance can be achieved if the government tries to boost economy in crisis.