Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 17 July 2019

Khalifa Fund extends Emirati Entrepreneurs Association financial and technical support

Package to support skills, capacity development and create a suitable environment where their business projects can thrive

It should be a hot and sunny day in Abu Dhabi. Victor Besa for The National
It should be a hot and sunny day in Abu Dhabi. Victor Besa for The National

The Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development (KFED), a government agency to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), awarded the Emirati Entrepreneurs Association (EEA) a financial and technical grant to support local talent as the UAE continues to foster local SMEs.

The package will be used to develop Emirati entrepreneurs' skills and create a sustainable environment for business projects to thrive, KFED said in a statement on Saturday.

"We vow to cooperate and work with the association [EEA] to promote entrepreneurship and the .... SME sector in the country," Mouza Al Nasri, acting chief executive of the Khalifa Fund, said.

The SME sector in the UAE, the second-biggest Arab economy, makes up around 98 per cent of businesses and their contribution to the country’s gross domestic product is estimated at 53 per cent. Development of the sector is among the top priorities of the government, which under its national economic agenda, aims to boost the contribution of the SME sector to the country’s economy to 70 per cent by 2021.

The KFED, along with other government agencies provides various forms of support to Emirati entrepreneurs including facilitating their participation in local and international exhibitions and forums as well as giving them exemptions and priority in government procurement processes.

The fund also supports its beneficiaries with access to consultation services and advanced training programmes to help them enhance their business abilities and sharpen their skills to resolve challenges ranging from conception to execution of their projects.

The EEA aims to attract aspiring young UAE entrepreneurs by encouraging them to initiate quality projects that will have a strong economic impact across various fields.

The association’s main objective is to provide technical, administrative and advisory support to entrepreneurs through a range of training courses to develop their abilities.

The EEA seeks to develop the local SME sector by strengthening its relations with the public and private sectors while helping unify their efforts to improve non-financial support to entrepreneurs, Sanad Al Meqbali, chairman of the association, said.

The EEA was officially registered in 2014 with support from Khalifa Fund to help encourage and coordinate joint efforts across local entrepreneurs and SMEs.

Updated: June 22, 2019 06:42 PM

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