The Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority (DAFZA) has revealed its participation as a key sponsor at the 2017 Seamless Middle East Summit, which will run from May 1 to May 2, 2017 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Center (DICEC). The event is a global platform that brings together the giants of e-commerce, e-payment and retail leaders. More than 10,000 officials, experts and 350 companies from 100 countries will participate in the event. The agenda of the event will include a series of seminars and round tables that will be conducted by DAFZA to review and discuss best practices and solutions in the e-commerce sector, particularly across future trends that are aimed at enhancing the experience of the investment community leaders in the Free Zone.
In conjunction with its sponsorship of the event, DAFZA has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Arab Union for Electronic Commerce (EFTU), one of the unions of the Council of Arab Economic Unity in the League of Arab States, to exchange knowledge and expertise in the digital economy and electronic e-commerce through exchange and participation in the preparation of joint studies and reports related to the e-commerce market in the Arab world. According to the MoU, both parties will cooperate with Arab governments to develop and harmonize legislation and laws to facilitate the practice of electronic commerce, especially through free zones. The two parties will develop a comprehensive cooperative framework for the establishment of conferences and workshops related to electronic commerce, as well as encouraging and promoting electronic commerce in the Arab world for investors.
The MoU was signed by Nasser Al Madani, Assistant Director General, DAFZA and Abdul Wahab Ahmed Ghoneim, Vice Chairman of the Arab Federation for e-Commerce during a ceremonial signing event held at the DAFZA headquarters.
Al Madani said, “DAFZA recognizes Dubai’s pivotal role in the e-commerce sector--being one of the leading hubs in this field. Following on our commitment to UAE Vision 2021’s goal of positioning the country among the world’s top investment destinations, we have partnered with AFEC to help build a knowledge- and innovation-based economy and encourage investors in the e-commerce industry to adopt facilities and infrastructure for ensuring the safety and success of the industry as well as promoting seamless e-commerce between businesses.”
The participation of DAFZA in the exhibition will showcase the investment and commercial advantages it offers to investors in products and services that facilitate the creation of their regional businesses with an exceptional experience that will allow them to grow and prosper from Dubai to the world. In addition to its pivotal role in injecting new innovative ideas and exchanging best practices and experiences with the experts involved in the field of electronic commerce, which is witnessing rapid growth in the Middle East region, especially in the UAE, with its high economic technical and digital infrastructure, which makes it able to create investment opportunities in the Arab world.
Amna Lootah, Assistant Director General of Finance and Commercial Operations, DAFZA, said, “DAFZA is sponsoring this year’s edition of Seamless Middle East 2017 to support creative ideas and promote dialogue among industry professionals actively involved in the Middle East’s digital economy. DAFZA plays a leading role in supporting e-commerce through its wide range of integrated smart solutions and state-of-the-art facilities. These form part of our efforts to facilitate the work of foreign investors and thereby promote a healthy investment environment for all those interested in entering the industry from Dubai, the Middle East’s economic gateway.”
Lootah added, "Statistics have recently shown that e-commerce in Dubai is expected to grow to about 10 per cent over the next five years and that the UAE's e-retail sector will grow by 24 per cent annually to AED 14.1 billion by 2021. These announced expectations make us look optimistic about the e-commerce sector in the region and that the free zone will play a key role to keep pace with this growth and contribute to the development of the aspects of service and products coming in line with the leaders of the sector.”
For his part, Dr. Abdel Wahab Ghoneim, Vice Chairman, Arab Federation of e-Commerce, one of the organizations of the Council of Arab Economic Unity in the League of Arab States, and with the support of H.E Ambassador Mohamed Al Rabea, said, “The Secretary General of the Council of Arab Economic Unity seeks to increase the volume of intra-Arab trade through e-commerce transboundary, This is why we have sought to sign a MoU in conjunction with the digital economy conference, Seamless E-Commerce, with DAFZA, in view of its pivotal role in supporting and promoting economic growth at the local and regional levels. We are confident in joint initiatives and activities, which reinforces the role of Dubai and the UAE as a major hub for the global economy.”
The participation of 350 exhibitors from around the world in the presence of more than 10,000 visitors, including investment and capital figures, is the first of its cooperation with the Arab Union for Electronic Commerce and represents the move to enhance the knowledge of the digital economy and the importance of electronic commerce in the Arab world, preparation of studies and reports on the electronic commerce market, as well as the establishment of electronic conferences, seminars and workshops.
Seamless Middle East 2017 will include five main sections--Government, Communications, Retail, Business and Banks. It will offer a great opportunity to meet up with leading retail professionals, senior executives and investors from the e-commerce industry, as well as interact with government entities and test the latest advanced technologies.
The Council of Arab Economic Unity was established in 1957 as a body responsible for managing the Arab Economic Unity Agreement and determining the legislative, administrative and technical measures for the development and integration of the Arab economies. The establishment of the Arab Union for Electronic Commerce was initiated by a group of Arab countries and aims to be an effective partner in building a sustainable and prosperous digital economy in the Arab world to build an Arab digital society with the best smart services.
The Union also aims to address the difficulties and challenges facing e-commerce in the Arab region, including the infrastructure and technology needed to activate e-commerce and the development of general e-commerce guidelines that provide protection and security for commercial transactions on the internet while also contributing to the development of international standards and adoption of best practices--including the recommendations of legislation for the fight against cybercrime and the implementation of laws on digital signature to suit the requirements of the era and to provide advice to ensure the progress and strengthening of the Arab electronic markets, such as smart applications and electronic payment platforms, among others.