Dubai’s Department of Economic Development (DED) aims to ease the business environment of small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the emirate through various initiatives it aims to introduce before the end of the year.

“SMEs are a big component of Dubai’s economy. They make up 95 per cent of Dubai’s economy, they employ about 42 per cent of the workforce and contribute 40 per cent to gross domestic product (GDP) and we are coming up with more specific initiatives to help this sector,” says Abdul Basit Al Janahi, chief executive of Dubai SME.

The DED is working with the Dubai Courts to establish a Centre of Amicable Settlement of Disputes to offer a one-stop shop for SMEs to help settle disputes.

“This will make lives easier for SMEs. Taking cases through the normal process takes a lot of time and is costly, but this centre will add a lot of value to achieve a resolution in a month,” says Al-Janahi

The DED has also signed a memorandum of understanding with Sharjah Economic Development Department (SEDD) to cooperate and exchange expertise to attract foreign investment.

“We have more initiatives to support and add value to SMEs and entrepreneurship in general because they are the engines of the economy and innovation providers,” says Al-Janahi.