New plant in Al Ain to provide 600 jobs

Strata, owned by Abu Dhabi’s strategic investment company Mubadala, is also looking for projects in the US and Europe to be close to its major clients, aircraft makers Boeing and Airbus.

Strata Manufacturing will provide 600 new jobs when it opens its second Al Ain plant – three times the size of its existing factory – in 2017.

Strata, owned by Abu Dhabi’s strategic investment company Mubadala, is also looking for projects in the US and Europe to be close to its major clients, aircraft makers Boeing and Airbus.

The announcements are part of an Emiratisation push for thousands of high-tech jobs in sectors ranging from aerospace to petrochemicals.

“We are building an aerospace industry for Abu Dhabi, not necessarily in Abu Dhabi,” said Strata chief executive Badr Al Olama at Meed’s Abu Dhabi Conference on Monday.

The plans are in line with Abu Dhabi’s Vision 2030 to diversify its economy away from hydrocarbons and create jobs for nationals.

Strata is also at the heart of a scheme to turn Al Ain into a major manufacturing centre.

It employs 650 people, 40 per cent of whom are nationals. And 80 per cent of the Emirati staff are women, Mr Al Olama said.

Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation is also focusing on attracting women to careers there.

Enec, which is building the UAE’s nuclear industry, has more than 1,000 employees of which 38 per cent are women, chief executive Mohammed Al Hammadi said at the summit.

And the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development, which lends to small and medium-sized enterprises, has funded 600 projects since its inception. One hundred and fifty of those have created 3,000 jobs.

Industrial companies in Abu Dhabi are being encouraged to expand operations through the Industrial Development Bureau, which was founded last year by the Department for Economic Development to galvanise industry.

Despite the drop in oil prices, the IDB is pushing on with plans for the steadily growing sector.

“We are encouraged that the emirate of Abu Dhabi grew its non-oil industrial manufacturing sector by 9 per cent last year, more than double the average GDP growth,” said Ayman Al Makkaway, director general of IDB.

“Of course, when the global economy recovers we are confident we will be positioned to capture new growth as well.”

The bureau has identified 13 industries on which to focus. It will set up industrial parks for sectors including petrochemicals, metal and food.

dalsaadi@thenational.ae

Published: December 8, 2014 04:00 AM

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