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Abu Dhabi DED digitally links four free zones in the emirate-

November 25, 2022

Project is part of efforts to create a unified database for economic licences and support the business environment

The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (Added) has digitally linked four free zones in an attempt to create a unified database for economic licences in the emirate.

The e-link project connects the Abu Dhabi Airports Free Zone, media free zone twofour54, the Masdar City Free Zone and the Kazed Group, which consists of 12 economic zones.

The initiative aims to improve the business environment, the department said.

“Our digital transformation journey enables and supports an integrated and proactive digital government, facilitated through advanced and innovative solutions,” said Added chairman Mohamed Al Shorafa.

“Completing the e-link project and unifying [the] commercial register will spur free zones’ contribution to sustainable economic development and further enhance the ecosystem to attract investments.”

Mr Al Shorafa is also chairman of the Free Zone Council, which supervises the special economic areas and includes the representatives of entities operational in the free zones.

Earlier this month, Added established an index to help private industrial companies to adopt smart manufacturing technology to hasten growth and boost competitiveness.

In June, the Abu Dhabi government pledged to invest Dh10 billion ($2.72 billion) across six industrial programmes to more than double the size of the emirate's manufacturing sector to Dh172 billion by 2031.

The e-linking of free zones will enhance the country’s status as it pursues the highest international standards of transparency and governance, Added said.

The department also intends to use the project to complete an integration with the Ministry of Economy’s database and the National Economic Register to provide “accurate, comprehensive and instant data” on the existing economic licences in the UAE.

“The e-link with economic free zones in the emirate will further enhance our integrated, business-supportive ecosystem to encourage investors and entrepreneurs to benefit from growth opportunities in Abu Dhabi,” said Added Undersecretary Rashed Al Blooshi.

“The project also reflects Added's interest to launch and implement initiatives to ensure [the] ease of setting up and doing business, simplifying economic licences' procedures and providing a unified database to enhance business sector, investors' and economic establishments’ confidence.”

Abu Dhabi's economy made a quick recovery from coronavirus-induced disruptions in 2021, with a similar trend continuing into this year.

Economic support measures and government initiatives — such as residency permits for retirees and remote workers, and the expansion of the 10-year golden visa programme — also helped to improve market sentiment.

Various initiatives, such as the rental exercise that was approved during the pandemic, supported the performance of businesses in the emirate.


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