Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry appoints Ahmed Khalifa Al Qubaisi as CEO

Chamber seeks to position emirate as preferred choice for businesses and talent in Mena region by 2025

The Abu Dhabi skyline. The Chamber of Commerce and Industry is embarking on a three-year transformation to help boost the private sector’s contribution to the economy. Khushnum Bhandari / The National
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The Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry's board of directors has appointed Ahmed Khalifa Al Qubaisi as its new chief executive, as the emirate seeks to further expand its non-oil industries and the role of the private sector.

Mr Al Qubaisi's main focus will be to establish a “resilient and interconnected” business community and to support the chamber's goal of positioning the emirate as the top choice for businesses and talent in the Middle East and North Africa region by 2025, it said in a statement on Friday.

“Al Qubaisi will play a key role in strengthening the business community and contributing to the growth of Abu Dhabi’s economy by forging partnerships and fostering engagement with the business community,” said Abdulla Mohamed Al Mazrui, chairman of ADCCI.

The new appointment will help achieve the chamber's goal in “promoting the emirate of Abu Dhabi as the go-to destination for businesses and a highly regarded business hub on the world competitiveness map.”

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Abu Dhabi is seeking to diversify non-oil industries – as part of wider plans to reduce the economy's reliance on oil – with a focus on expanding strategic industries including tourism, manufacturing, advanced technology and logistics by harnessing the role of the private sector.

In February, the chamber said it was embarking on a three-year transformation journey that will help boost the private sector’s contribution to the economy and increase the flow of foreign direct investment into the emirate.

Under its 2023-2025 road map, the trade body is planning to empower Abu Dhabi’s private sector and work with local businesses and government bodies to boost trade and commerce, it said at the time.

Mr Al Qubaisi has more than two decades of experience in business, investment and strategy. Before joining ADCCI, he held executive leadership positions in finance and investment at Adnoc. Mr Al Qubaisi also has international experience through his tenure with BP and Ernst & Young.

Mr Al Qubaisi is also a certified corporate director from Harvard Business School. He was a board member for Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Authority, Adnoc Distribution and Adnoc Refining, while also chairing multiple executive committees, audit committees and finance committees.

Mr Al Qubaisi holds a Global Executive MBA degree from INSEAD Business School. He has completed a leadership programme from Harvard Business School, and earned executive leadership and management certificates from the University of Oxford and IMD Business School.

“This strategic decision comes in line with the Abu Dhabi Chamber’s new three-year strategy 2023-2025 in cementing the chamber’s position as the voice of the private sector and enhancing its role as a policy advocator, a networker, and a service provider,” Mr Al Mazrui said.

Mr Al Qubaisi said he would build on the chamber's work of supporting and empowering the business community in Abu Dhabi.

“Through working hand-in-hand with the chamber’s highly qualified and skilled team, I am confident that together we can unlock the full potential of businesses, and drive sustainable economic development and growth in the emirate of Abu Dhabi,” he said.

Updated: June 23, 2023, 12:21 PM