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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 September 2018

Global Competitiveness success confirms UAE on the right track

WEF says UAE is the most competitive in the Arab world 

When the going gets tough, the tough get going, as the old saying goes. While the UAE's economy has had to endure difficult times in recent years, the country continues to demonstrate its resilience on the international stage, putting in place the right pillars for sustainable growth in the future.

The latest feather in the UAE's cap comes from the World Economic Forum's (WEF) Global Competitiveness Report for 2017-18, which once again ranked the country as the most competitive economy in the Arab World.

The Global Competitiveness Report is one of the world's most closely watched surveys of countries' economic performance. Since 1971 it has measured the health of the countries' economic competitiveness via 114 indicators across a wide spread of sectors. A high ranking matters.

Despite a very difficult year economically, the UAE only dropped one place to number 17 out of the 138 countries surveyed worldwide.

The country topped the global rankings in terms of efficiency of government spending, and came fifth in the rankings for the strength of both its institutions and its infrastructure.

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The UAE's high scores in such categories are particularly impressive when one considers the economy has been under considerable pressure since oil prices dropped in mid 2014 in the biggest price plunge since the financial crisis of 2008. The country has been able to hold its own though, and has made significant progress in diversifying its economy to lower its reliance on oil revenues.

The International Monetary Fund is expecting the economy of the UAE to jump 4.4 per cent next year after a modest forecast of 1.5 per cent growth this year. Much of that growth is forecast to come from the non-oil economy, which has shown signs of strong recovery in recent months, buoyed by growth in tourism, a rise in trade and a consumer confidence renaissance.

Plenty of work still needs to be done, with little room for complacency. But the country's high score in the WEF report is just the latest confirmation that the UAE's government is steering the right course for the country's future.

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