ISLAMIC FINANCE & BANKING
Professional & Industrial Services
We offer professional services firms the following advantages:
- Easy access to the rest of the region, especially Saudi Arabia (one hour drive) and Kuwait (four hour drive)
- Domestic demand for professional services from the financial sector
- Low operating costs
- A skilled workforce
- A favourable legal environment.
Professional and industrial services firms in Bahrain include:
AT Kearney, CB Richard Ellis, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, JWT, KPMG, McKinsey & Company, Norton Rose, PwC and Roland Berger.
Bahrain is the ideal Middle Eastern base for many logistics companies, with a number of leading international companies selecting it as their regional hub.
We deliver the following advantages:
- Easy access to the large and growing economies of the upper Gulf
- Highly developed road, sea and air connections – with the shortest travel time between the seaport, airport and the logistics processing zones of anywhere in the Gulf
- An ongoing programme of multi-million dollar infrastructure improvements
- Bilateral trade and economic agreements with over 60 countries
- The region’s most liberal business environment.
In particular, the 25km King Fahd Causeway to Saudi Arabia brings the Kingdom’s Eastern Province within easy reach, while Riyadh is just four hours by car, as is Kuwait. Once the 45km ‘Friendship Causeway’ is completed in five years’ time, Qatar, one of the fastest growing economies in the Gulf, will also only be a short drive away.
Logistics firms in Bahrain include:
Agility, Agunsa, APM Terminals, Aramex, DHL, Expeditors, FedEx, GAC, Kuehne+Nagel, Panalpina, TNT, UPS and others.
Education & Training
With the oldest public education system in the Arabian Peninsula, Bahrain has a reputation for high-quality education and training.
We deliver the following benefits to education and training companies:
- Bahrain is a regional thought leader in education, hosting conferences that attract leading educational academics from around the world (Source: 1).
- We have a thriving education sector, including an expanding public education and training sector, and private schools offering curricula from around the world
- The Quality Assurance Authority for Education and Training safeguards standards
- A significant portion of the budget assigned to Tamkeen, the national labour fund, is available for private sector education and training.
Bahrain was the first Gulf country to open a public education system (1919) and the first to enrol women (1928). Today, Bahrain has an adult literacy rate of over 91% according to the UN Human Development Report 2011.
Educational establishments already in Bahrain include:
The University of Bahrain, Bahrain Polytechnic, Bahrain Training Institution, Bahrain Institute of Banking & Finance (with links to UK’s Bangor University), DePaul University (United States), Gulf University, New York Institute of Technology, Royal University for Women, Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and University of Strathclyde.
At the heart of the GCC trillion dollar market, Bahrain is the ideal base for meeting the Gulf’s growing appetite for manufactured goods.
Bahrain offers manufacturing companies the following benefits:
- Central location reduces freight costs
- Excellent road, sea and air links – one hour’s drive from 50% of Saudi Arabia’s economy (with the Kingdom’s Riyadh business hub only four hours away), home to Bahrain’s national carrier, Gulf Air, which has the largest regional network and connects to over 50 destinations worldwide, and home to one of the Gulf’s largest trans-shipment hubs
- Membership of the GCC common market guarantees duty-free trade
- Bilateral trade and economic agreements with over 60 countries, including China, France, India, and Singapore, as well as a Free Trade Agreement with the United States and a Double Taxation Agreement with the UK.
- Plentiful supply of specialist, skilled and semi-skilled workers
- Supportive labour fund, See source (1)
- Competitive costs for labour, industrial land and energy (Source: 1)
Manufacturing companies already in Bahrain include:
RMA, LAUSCHA and BASF.
(1) See Bahrain Industrial Investment Park (www.biip.com.bh) for cost incentives for manufacturing companies.Tamkeen, partners with businesses to improve the skills and productivity of Bahrainis
Information Communications & Technology
Bahrain’s position as the Middle East’s most liberal information, communications and technology (ICT) market, along with excellent infrastructure, has encouraged many ICT companies to base their regional headquarters here.
Bahrain offers ICT companies the following advantages:
- The Middle East’s only deregulated telecommunications market
- Best access to high-growth Gulf market
- Robust track record (first to digitise telephony switches (1992), first to launch internet service (1995), first to liberalise telecommunications (2004), ranked number one in the Middle East in UN e-government survey (2010))
- Excellent telecommunications infrastructure, with fibre optic cable links to the rest of the Gulf and fast internet download speeds
- Strict intellectual property laws to protect intellectual capital and create the conditions needed for software development outsourcing
- Competitive and growing telecommunications market, governed by the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, with low fixed telephony and internet penetration
- Highest household broadband penetration worldwide (Source: 1).
- Low cost of operation and living
- Active US Free Trade Agreement facilitating technology exchange.
ICT companies already in Bahrain include:
Batelco, Cisco, Hewlett Packard, Huawei, Kalaam Telecom, Lightspeed, Menatelecom, Microsoft, 2Connect, Viva (Saudi Telecom), Software AG, Tech Mahindra, TATA Consultancy Services, WIPRO and Zain.
(1) The Global Information Technology Report 2010, World Economic Forum. The Global Information Technology Report 2010, World Economic Forum.