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Expo 2020 Dubai allocates Dh.5bn bonanza to small businesses

02 May 2019

Expo 2020 Dubai has announced that 20 percent of the total direct and indirect spend of the Expo, representing more than Dh.5bn in contracts, would be allocated to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), both local and international.

This initiative is likely to increase the number of opportunities now available for SMEs, and all interested vendors and suppliers are being advised to register on the Expo 2020 Dubai esourcing portal (https://esource.expo2020dubai.ae).

This landmark announcement is the latest in a series of SME-focused operational and legacy driven initiatives which has emerged so far. Expo 2020 strongly believes in the vital role that SMEs play in contributing towards effective and innovative delivery of an exceptional World Expo for both visitors and participants, and UAE’s wider diversification efforts.

The Minister of Economy and Chairman of UAE SME Council, Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansoori, said that SMEs are already playing a major role in UAE’s drive towards cultivating a thriving private sector and diversified economy, which makes SME empowerment a strategic priority for the Government. 

The effort is aligned with UAE Vision 2021 to transition into a knowledge-based economy which fosters creativity and innovation, the Minister said.

The UAE’s local and federal authorities are working closely to further strengthen local SME sector and provide entrepreneurs and SMEs with necessary support to fulfil their role in economy.

The Minister also affirmed that the government’s efforts are emphasized by Federal Law No2 of 2014 on SMEs and projects, which allocates minimum 10 percent of all federal contracts to SMEs.

The UAE Minister of State for International Co-operation and Director General Bureau Expo Dubai 2020, Reem Al Hashimy said that Expo 2020 Dubai acts as an enabler for SMEs and is constantly seeking opportunities to maximize their integration into wider UAE economy.  The integration of SMEs into delivery of Expo 2020 Dubai is likely to stimulate employment, strengthen existing industries and improve SME competitiveness, resulting in sustainable economic growth. This will be an important part of Expo 2020 Dubai’s legacy for UAE and the whole region, Al Hashimy said.

The e-sourcing portal of Expo 2020 Dubai serves as a primary gateway to the vast majority of Expo 2020 Dubai procurement operations. Apart from announcing forthcoming tenders, the portal also details awarded packages pertaining to both goods and services, providing further possibilities for integration into the supply chain through in-direct procurement and collaboration.

The procurement has been modified to allow SMEs to bid more competitively, including a proposal to validate 60 days, with no tender bonds required, no advance payment guarantee required, 50 percent advance payment for goods and materials, 25 percent advance payment for services and a commitment of 30 days’ payment from receipt of an approved invoice.

Robin Vinod

Writer/blogger who writes on topics such as travel, real estate, employment and everyday life on GCC countries