DOHA: The manufacturing industries in the GCC, led by chemical and petrochemical sector, have witnessed a major expansion over the last five years.
With an annual average growth of 4 percent, the total value of the industries touched $369bn in 2013. With 22.2 percent share of the total industrial investments, Qatar ranked second in the region only after Saudi Arabia (54.2 percent), according to data released by the Gulf Organisation for Industrial Consulting (GOIC).
In the industrial investments ranking, the United Arab Emirates stood at third (8.8 percent), in the six-member council followed by Oman (6.5 percent) and Kuwait (5.5 percent). Bahrain stood at the bottom with 2.8 percent of industrial investments.
The GOIC revealed that the GCC industrial base has witnessed a major expansion over the last five years. The value of investment capital increased from nearly $181bn in 2009 to almost $369bn in 2013 (a cumulative growth rate of 19.5 percent for five years).
The number of factories paralleled this growth rate. It has increased from 13,002 factories in 2009 to 15,689 in 2013 (a cumulative growth rate of 4.8 percent for five years).
In addition, the number of workers jumped from nearly 10,31,825 in 2009 to almost 13,79,257 in 2013 (a cumulative growth rate of 7.5 percent).
Abdulaziz bin Hamad Al Ageel, Secretary General of GOIC, said: “The industrial sector has witnessed a huge progress and impressive achievements because of the support of GCC countries and the major role it plays in accomplishing strategic and economic objectives.”
He added: “GCC countries’ efforts to back industrial development included providing adequate infrastructure, creating industrial cities and industrial development funds and offering several other industrial incentives. The positive response of the private sector and its cooperation with governments resulted in achieving industrial development goals.”
According to GOIC’s IMI Plus databases, there are several industrial development indicators in GCC countries between 2009 and 2013. These countries offered incentives and supported the industrial sector, hence increasing the value of investments in factories operating in GCC countries end of 2013.
In this regard, chemical and petrochemical products manufacturing gathered the biggest amount of investments, $220.3bn (59.6 percent of the total investments) with an average growth rate of 21.7 percent for five years.
Ranked second, the basic metals industry received investments worth $51.6bn (14 percent of the total investments) with an average growth rate of 19.6 percent. The sector of construction metals, transport and other industries gathered investments worth $34.6bn (9.4 percent of the total investments) with an average growth rate of 23.6 percent.
The building materials sector’s investments were almost $34.5bn (9.3 percent of the total investments) with an average growth rate of 13.5 percent. Food products, beverages and tobacco received almost $18.1bn worth of investments (4.9 percent of the total investments) with an average growth rate of 10 percent.