CEO of the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), HE Marwan Jassem Al Sarkal, called for an increase in the volume of government and private investments in the infrastructure sector in GCC countries and the Arab.
Speaking at the event, which was attended by key experts, business leaders, representatives of investment authorities and directors of investment companies operating in infrastructure sectors, Al Sarkal noted that the involvement of governments in creating more investment opportunities in infrastructure would lead to attracting additional foreign investments in other fields, thus boosting the fundamentals of national economies and offering long term job opportunities due to the human resources and manpower needed to manage and execute infrastructure projects. "The GCC countries witnessed a remarkable increase in infrastructure investments in quality and quantity over the past years. The infrastructure sector also saw increased investment partnerships between the private and public sectors, irrespective of challenges resulting from the global financial crisis. The infrastructure sector is expected to see more investments in the region and the Arab world over the next few years in the light of changes taking place in the region," he said. Shurooq's CEO pointed out that investment in infrastructure requires accurate and in-depth studies covering all aspects of any project before pumping in funds to ensure the success of the project and the anticipated potential profits for the society as a whole. He referred to the live experiments in Latin America, which indicate that investment in infrastructure projects would have a significant impact on the recovery of the economies of countries while also significantly reducing unemployment rates. Al Sarkal outlined the status and diversity of infrastructure investment in the emirate of Sharjah and highlighted the emirate's numerous characteristics that qualify it to not only develop its existing infrastructure, but to also implement more infrastructure projects in the future. "The idea of private-public cooperation in this area is possible. In fact, there are real opportunities for partnerships between the two sectors in the field of investment in infrastructure that will serve in everyone's best interests, including the national economy, citizens and investors," Al Sarkal said. Shurooq was established in 2009 with the aim of achieving social, cultural, environmental and economic development on the basis of Sharjah's distinct Arab and Islamic identity. The Authority also aims to develop the emirate and encourage investment by adopting the best standards in providing quality services that help attract investors from the region and from all parts of the world. Shurooq's mission is concentrating on providing all facilities and incentives to investors and overcoming obstacles facing investment activity in the emirate. Shurooq also aims to evaluate and follow up on tourism, investment and heritage-related infrastructure projects and lay down the necessary plans for completing these projects.