Multisectoral economic mission to the United Arab Emirates

February 2017

Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Pieter De Crem leads a multisectoral economic mission to the United Arab Emirates from 11 – 17 February 2017, in cooperation with the Arab-Belgium-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce and Flanders Investment & Trade.

Belgium and the UAE have excellent bilateral trade ties. Belgium is the fifth most important European exporter of goods to the UAE and the largest European importer of goods from the UAE. This makes the Emirates by far our most important trading partner in the Gulf Region. The Belgian community in the country is also very larger, with approximately 3,500 Belgians working and living there. And Belgian companies have a long tradition of cooperation in a broad range of sectors, including construction, the diamond industry, medical expertise and the pharmaceutical sector, technical knowhow, dredging, etc.

Besides Abu Dhabi and Dubai, the mission also focuses on less explored Emirates such as Sharjah, Ras Al-Khaima and Fujairah, offering a real potential for Belgian SMEs.

The UAE, the second largest economy in the Gulf Region, is a very fertile and attractive consumer market with a growing, diversified economy, in addition to a political and economic stability. As it was the case for the princely economic mission to the UAE in 2015, this mission should also lead to new contacts and projects for Belgian companies, and also put Belgium in the spotlight as a very attractive investment destination for companies from the Emirates.



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