Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) Highlights Dubai's Status as Global Investment Hub at Middle East Investment Summit 2015

Dubai, UAE- 30 March 2015: The Dubai model has been to create a business friendly economy, supported by robust, world-class regulatory and legal frameworks. As a result, Dubai has organically emerged as a leading regional trade and finance hub with minimal government control and private sector regulation backed by state-of-the art infrastructure and a world-class business environment, according to Rajesh Pareek, Chief Financial Officer, Dubai International Financial Centre Authority (DIFC Authority).

Pareek believes that since Dubai is widely recognised as a global financial hub connecting this region's markets with the economies of Europe, Asia and the Americas, DIFC plays a pivotal role in enabling domestic and foreign investment. He emphasised that DIFC is proud to be a key part of Dubai's economic vision that is built on the ambition of shaping the emirate into an international financial capital.

Pareek added: "The Middle East and North Africa is home to nine of the world's largest sovereign wealth funds with assets of approximately US$2 trillion. Private wealth in the Middle East and Africa is projected to see annual growth of 6.5% and expected to reach US$7.2 trillion in 2018. However, the Middle East's financial sector represents both an opportunity and a challenge to local and international financial institutions, requiring the region's policy makers to develop an indigenous financial asset management industry to encourage investment in the region."

Rajesh Pareek's comments were made in his keynote address on the opening day of the Middle East Investment Summit 2015 that runs from 30 – 31 March at the Ritz Carlton, DIFC.

Citing the successful DIFC model, Arif Amiri, Deputy CEO of the Dubai International Financial Centre Authority (DIFC Authority), said: "Companies and financial firms are increasingly drawn to DIFC for its premium offering of an attractive and enabling location. Today, DIFC is proud to host most of the world's top 25 banks, 11 of the top 20 money managers, nearly all the top 10 global law firms and seven top insurance companies. We will continue to serve as the business and financial hub connecting emerging economies with the developed markets."

In addition, Amiri stressed on DIFC's strong commitment to consolidate its position as a financial powerhouse that offers the most attractive infrastructure, enhanced legal and judicial framework, and investment-friendly laws. "2014 was the most successful year for DIFC with an 18% increase in the number of active registered companies operating within the centre. Today, more than 2,000 people are employed within the DIFC," Amiri concluded.

The Middle East Investment Summit 2015 focuses on investment opportunities and strategies in emerging markets. Convening the region's top financial and banking institutions, fund managers, investment analysts and asset management firms, the event comprises panel discussions that explore evolving areas of interest in the investment space.

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