Private sector set to boost share in Abu Dhabi’s GDP



The private sector in Abu Dhabi has been strongly encouraged by a government report to raise its contribution to the emirate’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

According to a report issued by the UAE capital’s Department of Planning and Economy, Abu Dhabi’s GDP stood at Dh401.6 billion in 2007, 18.2 per cent of which was the share of the private sector.

The report called for the private sector to make better use of the available government incentives and stimulating policies to boost its contribution.

Under the rapid transformations in the global economy, the report added, the Government of Abu Dhabi would opt to widen the scope of co-operation with the private sector under the umbrella of a fresh true economic partnership that takes into account the development goals and interests of all stakeholders.

For the government, the challenge ahead will be on how to create a flexible financial and economic environment. The report acknowledged that the private sector would also face unprecedented challenges.

“Private firms will have to examine strategic and operational options in the light of fluctuating conditions that could come along with fast-moving liberalisation of the world economy,” the report said.

“The private sector needs to do more to increase its participation in the domestic economy, although its share in the GDP of Abu Dhabi rose to 18.2 per cent in 2007 from 17 per cent in 2006 and 15.5 per cent in 2005,” said the report on the outlook of economic development in Abu Dhabi, titled Towards Greater Public-Private Partnership.

The report said the contribution of the oil and gas sector in the GDP dropped to 65.7 per cent in 2007 from 66.3 per cent in 2006 and 66 per cent in 2005.

“Abu Dhabi is currently undertaking a massive government restructuring programme to come out with a formula of governance that enables constructive public-private partnership,” the report said.

The initiatives launched by the government for 2007-2008 would open up diverse opportunities for the private sector to enter into a strategic partnership with the government.

A package of major economic policies, the report said, would be released to provide a stimulating business and investment environment under which mega strategic development projects would be launched in the emirate.  

The numbers

18.2%: The private sector’s share of GDP in 2007

65.7%: The oil sector’s share of GDP in 2007