Thursday 10 October 2019
Dubai, represented by the Dubai Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI), has been elected to the presidency of the World Association of Investment Promotion Agencies (WAIPA). The achievement reflects the confidence of the international community in Dubai’s abilities to lead international economic development efforts.
Dubai FDI will be the President of the new Steering Committee that will lead the global FDI body from 2019 to 2021. Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs) from 49 countries and cities attending WAIPA’s General Assembly meeting held in Warsaw, Poland, voted by direct ballot to select the candidate for the WAIPA Steering Committee presidency for the first time. The vote for the two vice-presidency and regional directorship positions was held by secret ballot.
WAIPA was established in 1995 in Geneva, Switzerland, as a global non-profit organization by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) to promote the role of IPAs in enhancing economic development and foreign direct investment (FDI). WAIPA membership spans more than 160 national and sub-national IPAs from 130 countries.
WAIPA’s Consultative Council includes a number of United Nations (UN) organizations including the International Labor Organization (ILO), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the World Bank, the International Chamber of Commerce and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Fahad Al Gergawi, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Investment Development Agency (Dubai FDI), expressed his deep appreciation for WAIPA members’ trust and support. “This achievement came as a result of our continued efforts to progress WAIPA’s agenda to enhance cooperation and forge partnerships with WAIPA members over the years,” said Al Gergawi. “This is a vote of trust that reflects the vision of the UAE’s leadership to work closely with global stakeholders and partners in international organizations to shape the future,” he added.
Al Gergawi noted that Dubai’s position as one of the world’s leading three cities in terms of FDI inflows reinforces its positive role in promoting the stability and growth of the world economy. He said Dubai recorded strong growth in FDI in the first half of 2019, attracting projects worth USD 12.7 billion, a growth of 135 percent compared to the same period last year.
Addressing the WAIPA General Assembly, Al Gergawi stressed the importance of the role of IPAs and their positive impact on communities, cities and countries. He referred to the ‘Capacity 2030’ program launched by the Hamdan Center for the Future of Investment (HCFI) in partnership with WAIPA, which has earned the praise and support of WAIPA members and international organizations. The program aims to enhance the capacity of IPAs to facilitate USD 15 trillion worth of FDI flows into projects related to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.
Dubai FDI has been working closely with WAIPA members over the years to enhance cooperation, regional integration and capacity building. As a WAIPA Steering Committee member, Dubai FDI was elected as Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region from 2013 to 2016, and later as Vice President for the 2017–2018 period. As elected President for 2019-2021, Dubai FDI is the first sub-national IPA to lead the global FDI body.