We looked at a number of locations including Lebanon, Qatar, and the UAE, for our campus. Abu Dhabi had many things going for it in terms of stability, global connectivity, and a quality policymaking environment for us to engage with. The partnership with Abu Dhabi has worked well for us in many ways, allowing us to remain fully independent, which in turn allows us to make the greatest contribution we can to the country: developing a top-tier business school with a global reach based in the UAE, supporting the country’s long-term strategy for sustainable economic value creation as a global hub. The Middle East has challenges; however, it will be incredibly important in the next 50 years, due to the expected economic growth and even just in terms of sheer demographics. Our presence here is consistent with our mission: business should be a force to build bridges between people and cultures and bring prosperity, employment, and stability. We are here because Abu Dhabi is a strong base for us to position a global and regional hub.
President of Total E&P UAE, Group Representative, Total
DNOC has plans to adapt the best practices of IOCs, which is extremely positive as far as Total is concerned. We have always had great relationships with ADNOC, and the traditional split between NOCs and IOCs and their strategies is now narrowing. Therefore, it will be much easier to work toward common goals. For example, ADNOC will now look at the economic advantage of each project, which was not how it operated in the past. As an IOC, we have to look at the economics, and this means working together will become more productive as we will give more. It is opening partnerships not only upstream, but also downstream and across the petrochemicals value chain. Abu Dhabi, in a few years’ time, will thus be transformed by the new ADNOC and by new relationships between the different IOCs and ADNOC. Total has been here since 1939, and we have the largest footprint in the country, with partnerships not only in oil, but also in gas, solar, and desalination. This means we can expand our partnerships in other areas as well.
CEO, Bassel El Dabbagh
The largest factors in the success of the UAE’s logistic sector have been the commitment, consistency, and size of investments in ports, airports, roads, and, in the last few years, rail. Sizable expansions come every year, which demonstrates why the UAE has been ranked among the top-three most attractive markets for logistics over the past four years according to the Agility Emerging Market Logistics Index 2018. The index takes three factors into consideration, and one of them is market size, on which the UAE cannot be compared to India, China, and other emerging markets, making our ranking all the more impressive. The two other factors, market connectedness and market compatibility, are truly where the UAE shines. Transport and logistics is a key sector, and while there may be some delays, the government has signaled just how serious it is in terms of investing in this sector. We are extremely bullish about the opportunities in the market, particularly the entrance of COSCO and MSC. It will bring in larger volumes and attract more companies. Trade will significantly increase, and operators and cargo will continue to flock to the UAE.
General Manager, Al Gharbia Pipe Company LLC
The Japanese party of the joint venture originally had a similar, 40-year-old plant that closed down because of the volatile nature of the activity. As we wanted to set up an infrastructure abroad, the choice fell on an oil-rich country in the Gulf for several reasons. The Middle East used to be crucial for the Japanese pipe industry market, although now Indian companies have a stronger position, replacing most of our customers. Second, we looked at economic and political stability, which Gulf countries are blessed with. Then, research showed that the two biggest countries for pipes demand were Saudi Arabia and the UAE. In making the final decision to set up in KIZAD, we looked at tax regimes and incentives, opting for Abu Dhabi, which almost single-handedly plays the leading role in the oil and gas industry among the other Emirates. In 2012 and 2013, KIZAD had just opened and its location is logistically viable. With the support of the Japanese government, which was keen to maintain strong ties with the second-largest exporter of oil and gas to Japan after Saudi Arabia, we established excellent relations with Senaat.
UAE, ABU DHABI - Health & Education
Executive Director & Deputy Dean, INSEAD
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