SHARJAH/Sharjah Government Media Bureau, July 29, 2018 – Top Sharjah officials and economic stakeholders have strongly welcomed the move by global credit ratings agency, Standard & Poor’s (S&P), reaffirming Sharjah’s BBB + / A-2 sovereign credit ratings in long- and short-term. Lauding the decision by the global watchdog, they emphasised that Sharjah’s economic outlook remains healthy and positive in short and long terms, thanks to the Emirate’s diverse economy and its robust economic fundamentals under HH Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohamed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, attracting global investments and strengthening Sharjah’s leading position in the region.
Hailing the move by S&P, Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman of Basma Group and Chairman of ARADA, asserted that the keenness of HH the Ruler of Sharjah, to always communicate with citizens and residents in the Emirate and fulfil their needs has positively reflected on the development work, excellence in performance and growth in the Emirate. It has also helped provide a secure life for people in the Emirate.
Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi pointed out that the Emirate's credit ratings, arising from its robust financial position and low risk exposure, underscore the strength of Sharjah's economic environment and importance of its development programmes in achieving stability. He cited the Emirate’s initiatives and legislations that help provide a safe environment for investors and achieve prosperity for all people in Sharjah, heralding a future of giving and achievement.
While the report predicts that Sharjah’s economic growth will accelerate during 2018 and register 2% economic growth from 2018 to 2021, Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi pointed to several major economic projects that are being implemented in the Emirate with the cooperation of its public and private sector stakeholders.
The Chairman of Basma Group and ARADA confirmed the increasing demand of Sharjah’s investment market and its attraction of major investors from around the globe, thanks to the Emirate's strong infrastructure, excellent investment incentives and legal environment, which preserves the rights of investors and supports their objectives.
HE Abdullah Sultan Al Owais, Chairman of Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, stressed that S&P's prediction of the accelerating growth of Sharjah's GDP in 2018 reflects the upward trend of the Emirate's economy in light of the wise leadership’s vision to achieve comprehensive growth and build a modern and sustainable economy founded upon knowledge, creativity and innovation.
"S&P's ratings did not come out of thin air," said Al Owais. "They are the outcome of the vision of HH the Ruler of Sharjah. He has for decades looked ahead and charted the roadmap for a prosperous future, in perfect harmony with the UAE's economic system that seeks to build the world’s best economy and happiest society through serious preparations to join the Fourth Industrial Revolution and become a key player in the comity of nations.”
HE Sultan Abdullah bin Hadda Al Suwaidi, Head of Sharjah Economic Development Department said, “These ratings reinforce the Emirate's position in attracting future economic opportunities and acknowledge the prudent and professional management of the public sector.”
Al Suwaidi expressed confidence that these positive credit ratings given to Sharjah would help in attracting local, regional and international investments and further boost the trust the Emirate enjoys in the world of business and finance. He credited the unique vision of HH the Ruler of Sharjah for the Emirate’s positive economic outlook.
Al Suwaidi added that this achievement would have a positive impact for years to come in terms of volume of business and projects and enhance Sharjah's status as a safe and attractive investment destination for major international financial institutions.
Al Suwaidi pointed out that the Emirate of Sharjah, with its unique ability to combine strong economic growth with the contribution of private sector and the enduring commitment to protecting its rich cultural heritage, is working hard to cooperate with all sectors to provide the best investment environment for its investors.
Ali bin Hussein Khalifa Al Mazru'o, Director-General of Sharjah Financial Control Department said: “Sharjah’s economic structure projects a high level of diversity, with no sector alone contributing more than 20% of GDP. The oil and gas sector is only a secondary contributor to the Emirate’s economy, which reduces its exposure to risks.”
He added: “Besides, Sharjah is a regional manufacturing hub with numerous industrial and free zones, which bolsters its position as an attractive investment destination, together with the Emirate’s tourism offering and efforts to promote its diverse cultural projects. The Emirate also enjoys low risk levels in the banking sector. It boasts Sharjah Islamic Bank and Bank of Sharjah, supervised by the Central Bank. All these achievement stem from the vision and leadership of HH the Ruler of Sharjah, as well as his continuous support to all sectors and various segments of society.”
HE Waleed Al Sayegh, Director General of Sharjah Finance Department, said that S&P’s move assigning Sharjah positive credit ratings and a stable outlook is a reflection of Sharjah’s stable economy. “It acknowledges the government’s continuous efforts to improve the investment environment and implement development projects that support its ability to meet economic challenges and achieve long-term development goals, not to mention the strong financial position of Sharjah. All these factors make the Emirate an attractive destination for investors and business. They also boost confidence in the Emirate's economy and its ability to achieve sustainable growth besides offering a key incentive for public and private institutions to move forward on the path of growth,” he asserted.