Yemen's Business World

The government of Yemen is currently working in conjunction with the private sector to develop the emirate's business environment. The goal is to provide increased incentive for foreign investment, speed Yemen's transition to WTO member status, and to get free trade agreements with the EU and the USA. The US supports Yemen's membership in the WTO, and is offering help so that the emirate will meet all the requirements involved.

The World Bank's IFC, or International Finance Corporation, opened an office in Yemen in 2004 and immediately began investing in certain private sector projects. The US-run TDA (Trade and Development Agency) has either completely or partially paid for studies on several large infrastructure projects, such as a privately-run oil refinery near Hodeidah, cement plants, hospitals, and a wastewater disposal center.

Other major investment programs are:

The privatization program- it seeks to redefine and reinforce the government's role in the market based economy's management, all while reducing government expenditures on public enterprises and enhancing competition. The initiative also wants to encourage private investment, starting with the preparation of sixty-one economic units.

The free zone: the TDA supports the Free Zone's role in Aden, as well as improvement of both local and international competition. This will be done by training Free Zone employees and developing management strategies that mesh with the zone's properties and conditions. The free zone development project also seeks to finish certain utility and infrastructure projects.

Development of the port city: will enhance those areas' competitive edge. The initiative will begin in places like Mukalla, Hodeidah and Aden, where basic services will be improved. The technical and administrative capabilities of local authorities will be supported, keeping them in line with the systems of neighboring states. There will be an emphasis on partnership between local authorities and the private sector.

Improvement of Investment Conditions: this initiative will handle the institutional and regulatory reforms necessary for the promotion of exports, by improving the GIA's (General Investment Authority) performance. Investment law will favor the export industry and it will encourage industrial zone setup by the private sector.

Power Generation and Gas Pipelines: The construction of pipelines to bring gas from the Marib-Shabwah fields to Aden, al-Hodeidah and Hadramout. The goal is to build stations which are gas-powered, and to make it easier to establish industrial parks in these regions.

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