Ras Al Khaimah: Country and Foreign Investment
Free Trade Zone
Defying the challenging economic environment, the RAK FTZ has continued to achieve steady growth during the last few years.
In 2010, its 10th year in operation. RAK FTZ registered 1,740 new free zone companies during the year, while its International Companies (IC) division registered a record number of 1,499 – a 14.65 percent increase in the total number of registrations compared to 2009. As of the end of 2010, the total number of actively operational registered companies in RAK FTZ stood at over 5,000. RAK FTZ’s other achievements in 2010 included the launching of a new mobile phone website (English and Arabic), the unveiling of the new ‘Mazeed’ Service Desk at Business Centre 1 in the RAK FTZ Business Park and the opening of a new Promotion and Innovation Centre at Dubai Festival City, which offers a range of services to meet the growing business needs of its existing and prospective clients. Additionally, RAK FTZ also opened a new RAK Business Centre location in its Business Park, as part of its efforts to reach out to the investor community and corporate businesses across all markets and sectors.
After 522 new companies registered inj Q1 of 2011 (17 percent up on 2010), Oussama El Omari, CEO of RAK FTZ, said: “The tremendous increase in new registrations and licence renewals in the first quarter of 2011 reinforces our reputation as one of the most attractive investment zones in the Middle East. Our open door economic development policy has gone a long way towards gaining investor confidence from across the globe, as is evident from both the new registrations and the renewals. More importantly, the environment to grow and flourish has become a hallmark of RAK FTZ that is greatly admired by our investors.”
New registrations continued to rise in 2012, and the RAK FTZ reported a 70 percent year-on-year increase in new company registrations for the first half of 2013 a period in which a record-breaking 1,994 new companies joined the free zone. New companies registered in the RAK FTZ during H1 2013 included business from the United Kingdom, India, Turkey, and Germany, among others. A broad range of industries were represented in the new registrations including consultancy, general trading, logistics, and industrial manufacturing.
RAK FTZ’s impressive growth comes amidst large-scale infrastructure development currently under way in the Northern Emirates, with support from the UAE Federal government. This includes a USD43.3m plan to construct a 36-kilometre main pipeline to provide Ras Al Khaimah with water, as well as a solar island project.
“The unlimited support that we receive from the government of Ras Al Khaimah especially from HH Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, and HH Sheikh Faisal Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, RAK FTZ Chairman, has been a key factor in our successful positioning of the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah as an important international investment hub,” says El Omari.