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SMEs Won $1.8 Billion in Contracts at Expo 2020 Dubai

64% of these SMEs were from the UAE, while the rest composed companies from the US, the UK, Australia, India and France.

Further cementing the UAE’s position as a fertile land for both local and foreign startups and SMEs, Expo 2020 Dubai has reported that it awarded no less than $1.8 billion worth of contracts to SMEs, representing more than a quarter of the value of call contracts awarded.

64% of these SMEs were from the UAE, while the rest comprised companies from the UK (24%), the US (16%), France (4%), India (4%) and Australia (4%). Initially, organisers had set a target of awarding at least 20% of contracts to SMEs, a figure that was eclipsed, with 64% of contracts won by SMEs.

“Our commitment to SMEs has been embedded into our planning since the very beginning of our World Expo journey to support and empower SMEs – the lifeblood of economies across the world, including the UAE, where they are an important driver of economic growth and a vital source of job creation,” said Expo 2020 Dubai CFO and Deputy CEO, Mukhtar Safi. “The integration of SMEs into the delivery of what has been a truly exceptional World Expo will be an important part of Expo’s legacy for the UAE and wider region, stimulating employment, strengthening existing industries, enhancing SME competitiveness and ultimately contributing to sustainable economic growth.”

With AED1.06 billion awarded to UAE-based SMEs in 2021 alone, the exercise has served to strengthen  Dubai’s Government Procurement Programme, which demands of UAE government entities and establishments where the government holds equity of 25% or more, to allocate 10% of their purchasing to local firms that are members of the Department of Economic Development ‘Dubai SME’, which offers support, information and outreach for the SME sector.




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