As part of the Ajman Chamber of Commerce and Industry's (ACCI) efforts to develop a renewed global economic relations network that supports expansion and business development opportunities and promotes the emirate as an ideal destination for investment, the Ajman Chamber organized the "Ajman-Portugal" Business Forum with a view to enhancing joint cooperation and discussing opportunities to increase the volume of intra-trade and investments between the two countries and enabling business communities in both Ajman and Portugal to consolidate joint cooperation and learn about the available opportunities, especially in the field of furniture and furnishings.
The forum was attended by Mohamed Ali Al Janahi, Executive Director of the Trade Development and International Relations Sector, Nasser Al Dhafri, Executive Director of the Member Support and Innovation Sector, and Jamila Kajoor, Director of the Promotion and International Relations Department at the Ajman Chamber,
The Portuguese delegation was headed by Vitor Poças, President of the Portuguese Association of Wood and Furniture Industries (AIMMP), and Lurdes Eusebio, Founder and Chairwoman of the Portugal Business Council in Sharjah. A group of investors and owners of companies and factories concerned with the furniture and furnishings sector from Ajman and Portugal also attended the forum. The Ajman Tourism Development Department (ATDD), the Department of Economic Development in Ajman (Ajman DED), and the Ajman Free Zone (AFZ) participated in the forum held at the Ajman Saray Hotel.
At the beginning of the forum, Mohamed Al Janahi welcomed the attendees and emphasized the importance of the forum and its role in building fruitful trade and investment partnerships, especially in the furniture and furnishings sector, which is one of the best-distinguished sectors in the emirate of Ajman. The forum is also an interactive platform for exchanging knowledge, experiences, and best practices between businesspersons and officials in Ajman and Portugal. In addition, the forum provides an opportunity for participants to build new networks of business relationships that enable them to expand their potential customer base.
Al Janahi praised the strength of the economic relations between the UAE and Portugal, which witnessed significant growth during recent years, as non-oil exports doubled in 2021 compared to 2020, and the total volume of trade between the two countries in 2021 reached about AED 1.33 billion compared to about AED one billion dirhams in 2020, which supports to redoubling efforts and benefiting from the commercial and investment opportunities available in the two countries.
He also added: "Ajman Chamber affirms its keenness to provide all the necessary elements for Portuguese investors wishing to start their activities in Ajman, especially since Ajman is characterized by a unique investment attractiveness that has placed it on the map of the most prominent investment destinations in the UAE and the region due to its medium geographical location, ease of doing business, the integrated infrastructure of roads, communications, and energy, in addition to other advantages that support the diversification of investment opportunities in various sectors".
For his part, Vitor Poças presented an overview of the components of the wood and furniture industries in Portugal, explaining the efforts of AIMMP in upgrading the wood and furniture industries and reaching a segment of customers in various countries. He also stressed the keenness of the Portuguese side to strengthen relations and partnerships with government and private agencies in the emirate of Ajman, and increase the volume of trade in the field of wood and furniture industries, praising the development of the furniture industry in Ajman and the consequent increase in future cooperation opportunities between the two countries.
The Ajman Chamber, ATDD, Ajman DED, and AFZ gave a comprehensive presentation on the investment opportunities available in Ajman in the sectors of "tourism, industry, trade, education, health, services, real estate, building and construction, and other sectors", and the extent of Ajman's uniqueness with attractive competitive elements that support the ease of doing business.
The forum witnessed a review of the participating private sector establishments for their most prominent products, and bilateral meetings were held to discuss opportunities for cooperation and partnership and the possibility of benefiting from the opportunities available in the two countries.
At the end of the meeting, Mohamed Ali Al Janahi and Vitor Poças exchanged shields and souvenirs.