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The University of Birmingham Dubai and the UAE’s Securities and Commodities Authority (SCA) today signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the aim of further increasing investor confidence in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The MoU focuses on building human capacity at the SCA to help boost the reliability, competitiveness, and sustainability of the UAE’s capital market.

The UAE in recent months has launched several new projects aimed at enhancing the country’s investment environment and ease of doing business, including local supply strategies, transparency in climate data, corporate tax and an e-billing system.

Today, the UAE is the world’s 16th largest recipient of foreign direct investment (FDI), according to UNCTAD’s World Investment Report 2023. FDI into the UAE rose to a record $23 billion in 2022, accounting for 61 percent of total investments in the region.

This collaboration underlines our position as a strategic knowledge and research partner to federal and local government entities, supporting the UAE’s development.

Hisham Farag, Professor of Finance and Director of Sustainable Financial Innovation Research Centre, University of Birmingham

The MoU will cover professional training programmes, workshops, and joint events aiming to enhance professionalism and increase awareness of products and financial tools. The SCA will also have access to the work and research of the University of Birmingham Dubai’s Sustainable Financial Innovation Centre, which launched in November to explore environmental and social governance (ESG) practices, responsible investments, corporate social responsibility (CSR), as well as developments in alternative finance such as fintech and green finance.

H.E. Dr. Maryam Butti Al Suwaidi, the SCA’s CEO, signed the MoU during a ceremony at the University of Birmingham Dubai’s campus. She stressed the importance of expanding the SCA’s strategic partnerships with academic institutions operating in the UAE and abroad, explaining that this partnership with the University of Birmingham Dubai, a leading UAE-based academic and training institution, will be built upon a joint framework that serves the interest of both parties.

She said: “The SCA has been paying great attention to the development of human capital, which serves as a key element of the knowledge-based securities sector, and has been actively seeking to create young cadres capable of carrying out tasks with effectiveness and making qualitative achievements that generate positive impacts on their careers and organizations. To this end, the SCA has put together operational and strategic training plans to fulfill its vision and objectives to enhance the competitiveness of the UAE’s securities sector.”

Hisham Farag, Professor of Finance and Director of Sustainable Financial Innovation Research Centre, University of Birmingham said: “This collaboration underlines our position as a strategic knowledge and research partner to federal and local government entities, supporting the UAE’s development. We will support SCA’s capacity building efforts through leveraging our international network of experts and academics. We will also utilise our new Sustainable Financial Innovation Centre to apply cutting-edge research to real world challenges in capital markets, helping the UAE to further cement its position as a major global economic hub.”