Bahrain gateway for Australian ICT firms

MANAMA: Global IT companies are to select Bahrain as their regional headquarters for Middle East activities.An agreement to this effect has been signed by a Bahraini firm with the Government of Victoria in Australia at the GITEX Dubai 2008. Gulf Future Business (GFB), participating in “Bahrain Gallery”, reached an agreement to attract Australian Information and Communication Technology (ICT) companies to use Bahrain as a gateway to the markets of the Middle East. GFB chief executive Ahmed Al Hujairi said that the agreement with the Government of Victoria is within company’s strategy to promote Bahrain as a regional centre for global companies. He said the incentives and encouragement given by Bahrain have already attracted a lot of international companies to the kingdom. “The diversity of pilot projects that are responsive to the requirements of the knowledge economy, makes it necessary to search for new sources for developing our national economy,” said Mr Al Hujairi. He stressed that the legislative structure and advanced infrastructure available in Bahrain helped companies compete in the markets of the Middle East. Victoria government representative Maria Papadopoulos said that the choice of Bahrain is not a coincidence, but is a logical result of a scientific study of the business centres in the Middle East. “Bahrain today enjoys a privileged place with the infrastructure, laws and legislation on investments and the establishment of offices of foreign companies, all positive elements to encourage investment,” she said. GFB held a series of similar meetings with companies and organisations which took part in the GITEX exhibition from other Arab countries such as Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan and international including the US, Singapore, Belgium and Malaysia GFB had earlier signed similar agreements with international companies such as Bay Base, Malaysia.