The Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED) has officially launched an ongoing series of meetings to deepen collaborative ties with the private sector, ultimately realising the ambitious vision of the Falcon Economy within the Emirate. Al Multaqa meetings are targeted specifically at empowering Abu Dhabi’s family offices to achieve further commercial success and drive accelerated economic growth.
ADDED, in collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO), have organised the meetings as a platform to enable ongoing dialogue with family offices to support investment and the development of new pro-business policies. Participating companies will have access to information on the full range of investment opportunities available in Abu Dhabi to achieve their commercial goals and drive economic growth in the coming years.
His Excellency Ahmed Jasim Al Zaabi, Chairman of Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development (ADDED), said: "A pivotal aspect for Abu Dhabi lies in the cultivation of an open and cooperative dialogue between the government and the private sector. This collaboration is not only fundamental to the business ecosystem, but also underpins the entirety of our economy, contributing a substantial 60% to Abu Dhabi's non-oil GDP."
"Private sector and family businesses are instrumental in maintaining economic growth and prosperity due to their considerable experience, ability to adapt to market trends, and their unique position to form alliances with government organisations and global investors, particularly in sectors that are in harmony with Abu Dhabi's strategic initiatives. This spirit of partnership has not only helped establish Abu Dhabi as a regional and global economic leader, but also laid the groundwork for a sustainable future that emphasizes growth, prosperity, and well-being for all.” Al Zaabi added.
The inaugural Al Multaqa meeting in Abu Dhabi was attended by over 70 family office representatives. The event highlighted growth opportunities for Abu Dhabi’s family businesses. These include opportunities generated by Abu Dhabi’s public-private partnership (PPP) framework, which is driving infrastructure development while enabling private sector innovation and knowledge transfer. Long-term PPP projects establish sustainable business models and enable growth for local businesses and suppliers. Companies also learned about ADIO’s long-term Musataha agreements, which provide private sector investors with opportunities to develop government-owned land, which is a key enabler of investment.
Different elements of Abu Dhabi’s investment and innovation ecosystems were represented at the meeting. Family offices exploring a public listing on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) discussed the comprehensive set of benefits offered by the Abu Dhabi IPO Programme, from non-financial advisory services to a potential anchor investment.
Another key area of interest was the accelerated development of local and global startups, particularly through Abu Dhabi's global tech ecosystem Hub71. This dynamic platform brings together key enablers and investors in the region, fostering collaboration and facilitating access to resources for promising startups. For family offices seeking to diversify their investment portfolio, Hub71 presents a unique opportunity to invest in these high-potential ventures and contribute to the burgeoning tech scene in Abu Dhabi.
The event also highlighted the Abu Dhabi Industrial Bureau (IDB) efforts to support investment including the Abu Dhabi Industrial Strategy (ADIS) which aims to leverage advanced technologies to harmonise human development, sustainability, and growth, particularly in innovative and green technologies. This is complemented by the IDB’s industrial incentives and funds provided to support manufacturers in digitalising their operations. The Abu Dhabi Residents Office (ADRO) also presented the support they provide investors with a seamless journey towards establishing their business in the Emirate while also attracting some of the best talent in the world.
Also speaking at the event was ADDED’s Trade Facilitation Sector highlighting its role in further driving the Emirate’s economic diversification strategy by leveraging the UAE’s economic relations and CEPA agreements with key markets, such as India and China. They also highlighted the support offered by ADDED in driving the UAE’s exports globally by addressing challenges faced by the family offices and providing them with up-to-date data on the global trade and logistics sector through Abu Dhabi’s Advanced Trade and Logistics Platform (ALTP) and Abu Dhabi’s Exports Gateway (ADEG), which provide free access to databases and informational resources.
The enactment of the Family Business Governance Law in 2022 underscores the government's commitment to providing a robust legislative and regulatory framework, ensuring the continued development and vitality of these enterprises across generations.
Abu Dhabi was ranked as the fastest growing economy in the Middle East and North Africa, enabled by its dynamic environment and close collaboration between the public and private sectors. A key contributor to the Emirate’s plans continues to be family offices, where the UAE has firmly established itself as a hub for ultra-high-net-worth individuals. In 2021, the wealth of people in the UAE increased by 20%, where 41% was contributed by high-net-worth individuals and Family Offices.