Abu Dhabi's industrial sector contributed 10.7% to its non-oil GDP in 2020

The emirate promotes the industrial sector with new initiatives and incentive packages

June 17, 2009 / Abu Dhabi / A steel worker at Emirates Steel Industries in Musaffah June 17, 2009. (Sammy Dallal / The National)

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Abu Dhabi's industrial sector contributed 10.7 per cent to the emirate's non-oil gross domestic product in 2020, largely due to the government's efforts in promoting the industrial sector.

Fifty one industrial facilities started production last year with a total investment of Dh3.9 billion ($1bn), the Industrial Development Bureau of Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development said in a statement on Tuesday.

Industries related to food and chemicals, metals and machinery as well as construction and glass dominated the list.

“Despite the repercussions of Covid-19 that have impacted economies and investments around the world, the new investments in Abu Dhabi’s industrial sector reflect investors’ confidence in the emirate’s investment climate,” Mohammed Al Shorafa, chairman of Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, said.

Abu Dhabi, which holds about 5.6 per cent of the world’s proven oil reserves, is positioning itself as a technology and industrial hub. It has also introduced various initiatives over the past few years to encourage local manufacturing to improve self-sufficiency.

Of the total number of industrial facilities that started production last year, 35 were based in Abu Dhabi, 11 in Al Ain region and five in Al Dhafra.

The report also showed 283 new industrial licences were registered in Abu Dhabi in 2020. This included 171 ‘industry pioneer’ licences, 61 ‘under construction’ licences and 51 were related to ‘production’ licences.

Abu Dhabi currently has 1,694 industrial licenses registered.

Last year, IDB signed a number of agreements with strategic entities and partners to support Abu Dhabi's industrial sector, including a deal with Etihad Credit Insurance Company to boost exports. It also signed an agreement with 10 banksto help domestic factories and businesses access finance.

Abu Dhabi also rolled out a new initiative in January to promote locally-made products in an effort to achieve self sufficiency in the production of basic goods.