Annual Investment Meeting (AIM), world’s largest investment platform, and China Venture Capital Research Institute (CVCRI) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for a long-term strategic partnership to share resources and to boost investment opportunities within the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The MoU signed between Walid Farghal, Director General of AIM, and Jihong Ding, President of CVCRI is expected to attract Chinese venture capitalists and private equities looking for investment opportunities in different parts of the world. The MoU was signed in the presence of His Excellency Rahma bin Abdulrahman Al Shamsi, UAE Consul-General in the Chinese city of Guangzhou, and Yao Wenkai, the leader of the Shenzhen Municipal Bureau of Commerce, during a meeting held at Shangri-La Hotel in Futian Shangri-La Shenzhen on Wednesday (Nov 20).

With the signing of the MoU, international and local investors can network and make business partnerships with top Chinese venture capitalists and companies seeking new avenues of investments within BRI on the sidelines of AIM.

Walid Farghal, Director-General of AIM, said, “UAE-China ties are set for next level with the recently signed agreements in several key sectors like space, construction, tourism, healthcare, clean energy, oil and environment. The MoU opens a flood of opportunities for investors and countries to find feasible projects for portfolio investments, and invest in Future City projects or tie-up with start-up companies aiming for global operations. OBOR at AIM will be a linking platform for investors and Chinese companies seeking viable infrastructure projects for investments that are mutually beneficial for them.”

Commenting on the vital agreement, Jihong Ding said, “I am honoured to have a partnership with AIM, and look forward to developing the ties between UAE and China.  We are expecting 500 top venture capitalists and private equities to attend the upcoming 10th edition of AIM, which includes a special One Belt One Road (OBOR) event aimed at helping investors in identifying potential investment opportunities within the BRI.”

Founded in 2003, CVCRI is committed to providing excellent services for the theoretical and practical development and policy formulation of China’s venture capital business, and promoting the healthy and rapid development of China’s venture capital and high-tech industries. CVCRI maintains strong ties with more than 3,000 investment institutes, and nearly 10,000 innovative enterprises are docked on its platform, at home and abroad.

China considers UAE as an important partner in the BRI, and UAE is home to 6,000 Chinese companies, most of them based in Dubai.  The volume of China-UAE bilateral trade has reached $11.2billion in the first quarter of 2019, a 16 per cent hike compared to previous year. In the first five months of the year, the bilateral trade was worth $19 billion, up by 11.37 per cent, compared to the same period last year, according to reports.

Large energy companies such as China National Offshore Oil Corporation, Zhenhua Oil and a state-owned investment company, CITIC, have all set up offices in Abu Dhabi since 2018, while China Machinery Engineering Corporation, CMEC, opened an office in Dubai. China Railway Construction Corporation, China Railway Construction Engineering Group, Power China and China Energy Engineering Corporation are also sending more employees to the UAE market due to new projects.

AIM and its special event OBOR facilitate these investment opportunities within BRI, besides strengthening the bilateral ties between the UAE and China further. BRI transport projects can expand trade, increase foreign investment, and if fully implemented, it could increase trade between 1.7 and 6.2 per cent for the world, increasing global real income by 0.7 to 2.9 per cent.

The MoU signing ceremony was attended by more than 120 delegates representing top venture capitals and technology companies.

 Saada Saab Antypas

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