The Swiss export industry and the Gulf region

12.05.2022 The Gulf states – which are in the middle of a major transformation process – are a key destination for Swiss exports. A new research project explores the opportunities and challenges this development presents for the Swiss export industry.

In a newly launched research project, the International Management research group from the Institute for Data Applications and Security IDAS at Bern University of Applied Sciences BFH looks at the Gulf states – Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the UAE, Kuwait and Oman –, a key target region for the Swiss export industry. They all face huge social challenges – the foreseeable end to the oil era, a large state sector whose funding is no longer feasible medium-term, the impact of climate change in the region and the fact many young people in the population wish to work but face a lack of job opportunities. In light of these challenges, strategic programmes were developed in the aim of achieving a fundamental transformation of society, the state sector and industry to create modern and well-diversified economies. The goals are job creation, boosting non-oil-related GDP, strengthening the private sector, diversifying the economy and increasing tax revenues. The following sectors will be prioritised as part of this programme: tourism, mining, information technology, manufacturing, the construction industry and energy.

Opportunities for Swiss exports

This ambitious project requires huge investments. The transformation process presents the Swiss export industry with an outstanding opportunity to boost exports. The ‘Doing Business in the Gulf’ project explores the opportunities and challenges that these developments present for Swiss exporters and the strategy required to ensure a successful export industry in this region. The project is being supported by the Otto Wirz Foundation.

Schweizer Exportwirtschaft und die Golfregion: Neues Forschungsprojekt untersucht Chancen und Herausforderungen

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