Georgia is to invest in Ras Al Khaimah’s industrial sector after an official delegation toured facilities in the northern emirate.
During an official visit, Georgian Prime Minister Vladimer Gurgenidze reviewed investment opportunities with Sheikh Saud bin Saqer Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, and his economic adviser and CEO of RAK Investment Authority (Rakia), Dr Khater Massaad.
Gurgenidze showed a keen interest in the opportunities being provided by the emirate’s industrial facilities, including the Industrial Zone and the Free Zone in Al Hamra, the Industrial Park in Al Ghayl and RAK Offshore.
“I am impressed with the standard of infrastructure and the competitive edge that the Ras Al Khaimah emirate offers to investors. An investor-friendly regulatory environment fuels long-term economic growth, a fact that is well reflected in Ras Al Khaimah’s sustained progress in recent years,” the premier said.
“I am keen to take trade relations between Georgia and Ras Al Khaimah to the next level, which could see a significant increase in investment activity from Georgian investors in the emirate, and vice versa.”
Al Qasimi expressed confidence that the economic partnership between RAK and Georgia would receive new momentum and develop even closer ties in the future following the official visit and close interaction between officials on both sides.
“Bilateral economic links between RAK and Georgia have been expanding rapidly through increased trade, tourism and investment flows. However, we still need to redouble our efforts to tap the full potential of the two fast- growing economies.”
The Government of Ras Al Khaimah has already established strong relations with Georgia, as Rakeen, the real estate development arm of the emirate, is currently involved in the development of several landmark real estate projects in the country.
Five mega property projects by Rakeen will be developed with a total project value of more than $2bn (Dh7.34bn).
Dr Massaad said the visit was a way to educate the visiting delegation about opportunities in the emirate.
“The talks could soon translate into more Georgian investors setting up business ventures in RAK, taking advantage of the emirate’s favourable location and investment climate, while we also look to strengthen our presence in Georgia through our real estate and other projects. It was an honour to host the Georgian prime minister, and I am glad to have had an opportunity to engage in extremely fruitful discussions,” he said.
After touring various facilities, Gurgenidze praised the business and investment climate and expressed a willingness to work to increase investments in the emirate.
On the other end of the partnership, Rakeen is involved in several major real estate projects in Georgia, such as the Uptown Tbilisi mixed-used development and Tbilisi Heights, a residential and business complex in Tabaxmella covering 180 hectares.
Rakeen will also undertake the construction of the 400-room Vardzia hotel project and a 900-hectare project close to the Tbilisi International Airport.
The Uptown Tbilisi project – which comprises a luxurious shopping mall, four ultra-modern residential towers and two 36-storey office towers – will also house a 2,500 square metre RAK Ceramics showroom.
Rakia is at the forefront of RAK’s initiatives to diversify the economy, and is responsible for promoting the development of the Industrial Zone and the Free Zone in Al Hamra, and the Industrial Park in Al Ghayl. Since its inception two years ago, the investment authority has successfully attracted almost $2bn worth of investments from all over the world.
Business ties between RAK and Georgia witnessed substantial growth following a visit by Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili in February 2007, which was followed by a visit by Al Qasimi to Georgia in June.
$2bn is the total value of the five mega property projects that Rakeen, the real estate arm of RAK, will develop in Georgia
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