Two recent Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry workshops held at the chamber’s main offices in Deira helped to identify and capitalize on the trend away from conventional commerce to that of a cloud-based economy.
Sessions led by chamber specialists encouraged participants to prepare for the already apparent shift toward e-commerce in the emirate as well as across many GCC nations.
“Internet usage is rapidly growing, but B2B online commerce remains underdeveloped in the region,” Belaid Rettab, senior director for economic research and sustainable business development at Dubai Chamber, said.
Noting advance predictions of e-commerce revenues in the GCC based on 2015 research by Frost & Sullivan, Rettab said that the UAE had the highest internet penetration rate and electronic market in the entire Gulf region in 2014; and by 2020, it could sustain well over half of the GCC market share.
“Such expansion translates into myriad opportunities for innovative MENA businesses who want to expand their market reach,” Rettab said.
A variety of outcomes from the sessions included a review of the partnership between Dubai Chamber and Alibaba, the MENA region’s leading global e-commerce platform for SMEs; and creation of the “Trusted Member” label for vetting new merchants’ credit ratings.
Alibaba’s partnership with the chamber has also yielded a one-stop sourcing platform solution. Additionally, the events highlighted the value of B2B commerce and SEO practices. B2B is expected to provide the foundation for widespread economic growth in Dubai in alignment with the jurisdiction’s smart city initiatives and the 2021 plan.