Dawn of a new economic era Print E-mail
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Dawn of a new economic era
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“We have spent a lot of time and money in upgrading our infrastructure and building new ones to ensure that there are no bottlenecks that could impede industrial development plans for the country,” Dr Fakhro said.

The result has been impressive – one of the first big projects to be announced was the $40 million Kraft Foods cheese and powdered beverage production plant at the Bahrain International Investment Park in Hidd. Once operational, the facility is expected to employ around 250 people.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce is currently reviewing applications for several ambitious projects such as:

  • adding to the existing iron pelletizing plant to increase its production capacity to 6 million tons per annum at a cost of BD150 million (US $397.9 million) and creating employment opportunity for 200 people
  • building a sponge iron unit as an extension to the pelletising plant using part of their iron pellets, with a capacity of 1.5 million tons per annum and at a cost of BD100 million ($265 million) and providing employment opportunity to 400 people
  • a plant for the production of electric and control cables with a capacity of 33,600 tons per annum, at a cost of BD31 million ($82 million) and providing employment opportunity to 307 people

Dr Fakhro added, “We have conducted several studies and especially in the light of the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States of America; which showed that the opportunity in investing in the subsidiary and integrated industries are immense.

"This is not to say that we do not encourage investment in the basic industries. We have a healthy energy inventory and a comprehensive energy policy and plans in place. We prefer to put emphasis on the subsidiary industries because they are less energy and capital intensive and more environmentally friendly and more so because they provide more employment opportunities per dollar of capital expenditure.”

The thrust is definitely on subsidiary industries and knowledge-based industries that will allow for a ‘greener and leaner’ industrial profile for the kingdom; one that will be environmentally sound and make fullest use of the educational potential of the Bahraini people.

The kingdom’s national economy is growing stronger as the GDP witnessed an eight per cent growth. This healthy trend will help provide a strong support to all sectors, according to experts.