To attract investments,Three industrial zones to be established [Archives:2004/797/Business & Economy]

December 9 2004

Mahyoub Al-Kamaly
The Yemeni government has adopted a plan for the building of zones contributing to industrial development, distribution of industrial activity over various regions of Yemen and the providing of environment suitable for attracting local investments.
Yemen's cabinet has, for that purpose, called upon all investors and industrialists to invest in the new industrial zones, participate in the construction of their infrastructure and benefit from privileges the government would make available for investors. The Yemeni council of ministers has in this regard approved the republican decree related to the establishment of three industrial zones selected to be built in Aden, Hudeida and Mukalla where Yemen possesses a coastal strip amounting to 2500 km extending from north of Midi on the Red Sea to the west to Shahr to the east of Mahara on the Arabian Sea.
This situation qualifies Yemen for the construction of many strategic cities and ports on both Arabian Sea and the Red Sea, forming significant sea outlets for both economic and tourist sides.
Yemen is at present implementing a project for developing the city ports aimed at focusing on designing city ports and to care of them in addition to preparation of developmental strategy for them. This project has been established a short while ago. In accordance to Yemen's strategic plans the project is now being implemented as it is considered one of the more significant essential outputs for the speeding up economic development focusing on the coastal stripe in general and city ports (Aden, Hudeida and Mukalla) in particular.
This project is based on preparing ports as centers for economic attraction, to strengthen infrastructures in the three cities and preparation pf the developmental strategy of those cities. It is also meant for concentrating on the essential structures of the local administration authority, especially in the economic aspect. Yemen does focus presently on the city of Aden and then there would be a shift in concentration on the cities of Hudeida and Mukalla.
The importance of the projects comes from its being one of the major outputs for economic development. The projects works on three phases where the industrial zones in the three cities are included in the second phase of the project as well as the restructure of the local authorities and render help for the private sector in those cities in establishment of the projects and their implementation and creation of new jobs, and this would be at the third phase.
This phase includes also the support for the private sector in those cities in building projects and creating new jobs and this phase would also pave the way for supporting the major economic establishments; airports and seaports, and the focus on building a database by using communication technology for the facilitation of work in those cities.
The total cost of the project amounts to $ 96 million whereas the cost of the first phase amounts to $ 26 million and work in it would end in 2006. The World Bank has contributed to the cost by $ 23 million, approximately 90% and the government by 10%. In addition to that there are secondary finances to the project offered by other funds like the Saudi Fund that supports the project with %13 million. Sources at the project management say there are negotiations with the Arab Fund that would support the project of the sea bridge for linking the area of Khour Maksar to Al-Mansoura and the support is estimated to be at $10 million.
The sources say the work is presently done according to the main general design of the city of Aden which some international companies have started work in it in July 2004 and would be finished in February 2005. it is also expected that work in Hudeida and Mukalla have also begun in the mid of last October and presently work is going on for supplying projects of the infrastructure of the city of Aden and also preparation of a list of the main projects for the cities of Hudeida and Mukalla in order to help the government in applying decentralization system in the three cities and help those cities to implement the government economic plan planned to be implemented in those three cities.
Future activities of the project are in preparing for the first phase where there would be entering the industrial zones, supporting the private sector to conduct qualifying and training courses for the workforce and also facilitate measures of investment through supporting branches of the State Authority of Investment in hose areas and establishment of an information bank within the administration of local development.
As for the second phase there would be preparation of a scheme for four cities in each of Mokha and Taiz, Nashtoun in Mahara and Midi in Hajja. This scheme would work for expansion of the secondary city ports in Yemen.