A business mission of Business Russia to the United Arab Emirates has been completed. The fifth trip of entrepreneurs to this country, headed by the organization's Business Ambassador to the UAE Maksim Zagornov, turned out to be the longest in time, the most representative in terms of the number of participants and diverse in its program. Within five days, the heads of 10 Russian companies visited three UAE free zones (Masdar City, KEZAD, DMCC), made an official visit to Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and participated in the 24th International Water, Energy, Technology and Environment Exhibition WETEX-2022 as well.
The 24th International Water, Energy, Technology and Environment Exhibition WETEX-2022 is one of the most authoritative exhibitions of this profile in the world. It is held under the patronage of the Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The exhibition is organized by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA). This year, WETEX-2022 was held in the Dubai World Trade Center and gathered more than 1,500 companies from 55 countries. All-Russia Public Organization Business Russia has also presented its stand within the Made in Russia pavilion - in the second hall, next to the central DEWA exposition.
The opening ceremony of the Russian pavilion was attended by the Consul General of the Russian Federation in Dubai and the Northern Emirates Oleg Fomin, Trade Representative of the Russian Federation in the UAE Andrey Terekhin, Head of the VEB RF Representative office in the UAE Sergey Muslimov and Head of the WETEX organizing committee Joelle Khouri. "We are confident that we will expand our cooperation with Russia and grow together into a larger exhibition. We will not stop working with you," said Joelle Khouri at the opening ceremony.
Business Russia delegation consisted of 20 entrepreneurs representing the interests of 10 Russian companies. Within a unified stand, they presented innovative developments and technologies, held meetings and strategic negotiations, outlined the ways of further cooperation.
The stand of Business Russia and the Made in Russia pavilion in general aroused great interest among the exhibitors. A sign of special attention was the greeting of the Business Russia delegation by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, CEO and Founder of the Emirates Group, Chairman of Dubai World, during the WETEX exhibition tour. He welcomed the Business Ambassador of Business Russia to the UAE Maksim Zagornov and noted that he was glad to see such a representative delegation from Russia at WETEX.
During three days, Business Russia stand was visited by Vice-President of DEWA Abdul Syed Abdul Hameed, the delegation of DEWA Energy Department, the delegation of the Ministry of Energy of Saudi Arabia, the delegation of the UAE Engineers Association, the management staff of CEPCO, Jonson Control, Diamond Developers and many others. Moreover, the participants of the business mission conducted a series of substantive b2b negotiations with representatives of companies from the UAE, Qatar, Iran, Oman, South Africa, etc.
"WETEX has become a high–quality and necessary platform for Russian business to establish personal contacts with foreign partners, substantive negotiations and just to realize that we have a space to move forward and to develop. A number of established contacts can already be called highly promising – there is every chance that they will result in joint projects," noted Maksim Zagornov, Business Ambassador of Business Russia to the UAE.
The program of Business Russia business mission to the UAE also included visits to the key UAE free zones. On September 26, the delegation visited Mazdar City and KEZAD. The Director of Masdar City Zoë Harries welcomed Russian entrepreneurs in this free zone. She told about the history of the creation and advantages of this Free Zone, and also emphasized that Masdar City is ready to become a base platform for the companies of Business Russia. There was a tour of the eco-city arranged for the delegation of Russian entrepreneurs. Director Zoë Harries and Chief Investment Officer of The Catalyst accelerator company Shaker Ismail responded to the entrepreneurs' questions.
In KEZAD Free Zone (the Khalifa Economic Zones Abu Dhabi) Business Russia delegation was welcomed by the Commercial Director of KEZAD Khalid Al Marzooqi. He noted that everything possible is being done today to ensure that business from Russia develops in KEZAD. One of the main objectives of the visit was to discuss the prospects for the creation of Business Russia's production site on the territory of the Free Zone.
On September 30, Business Russia delegation visited DMCC Free Zone. The meeting took place in the legendary Almas Tower skyscraper. The delegation of Russian entrepreneurs was received by Bassel Bitar, Regional Representative - Asia and Eastern Europe. Today, DMCС is the largest economic zone in the UAE and a global center for international trade. It is one of the three most prestigious and fastest growing global Free Zones. As reported by Bassel Bitar, this year alone the number of resident companies from Russia has doubled - from 150 to 300. In total, more than 700 Russian companies are the residents of DMCC.
The visit of Russian entrepreneurs to Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry was a significant event of the business mission of Business Russia. The meeting was held at the highest level. The delegation was greeted by the Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry H.E. Abdallah Sultan Al Owais. He noted that Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Business Russia have a long-standing partnership: in 2019, the organizations signed a cooperation agreement. The vector of interaction with Russia is maintained for all subsequent years.
During the meeting, Maksim Zagornov, Business Ambassador of Business Russia to the UAE, and H.E. Abdallah Sultan Al Owais, Chairman of Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, discussed the interaction mechanism and possible common projects. Immediately after that, members of the Russian delegation presented their projects to the representatives of more than 20 companies in Sharjah within an extended b2b meeting.
Summing up the trip, Maksim Zagornov, Business Ambassador of Business Russia to the UAE, noted that this mission to the Emirates can be called one of the most successful ones. He especially noted the friendly attitude of the Emirati partners, their readiness to cooperate with Russian business.
"The program of the trip was drawn up in such a way as to give its participants the opportunity to get the most comprehensive understanding of doing business in the UAE in the current reality, to establish a wide range of contacts, to work through the specific issues on localization of production in the UAE. We visited three free zones, participated in WETEX - the leading exhibition in the industry, visited Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry. During the trip, the team of Business Russia Trade House in the UAE held consultations with entrepreneurs, organized spot meetings upon requests, held a thematic webinar on the algorithm for entering the Emirati market. In general, the business mission proved once again that the UAE is open to cooperation, supports the relocation of Russian companies, and sees this as a huge advantage for itself. Now is the right time to build up your business in the Emirates, move the profit center to this country," said Maksim Zagornov, Business Ambassador of Business Russia to the UAE.
It should be noted that business mission of Business Russia to the UAE was held amidst great interest in the event from the international media. Business Ambassador of Business Russia to the UAE gave an interview to NHK, which is the Japanese state-public central broadcasting company, one of the largest TV and radio companies in the world.