Senaat to invest further in industrial sector as earnings cross Dh1bn level

Senaat, the Abu Dhabi government’s industrial holding company, plans further investment in the country’s industrial sector following its strong first-half results.

The company posted a 20 per cent year-on-year rise in net profit to Dh453 million, noting that its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) exceeded Dh1 billion for the first time.

Senaat said it would reinvest profits to further develop its portfolio companies and establish new projects.

The company says its total portfolio amounts to Dh26.8 billion, which includes investments of more than Dh18bn over the past decade.

It has partial or full ownership in six companies: Emirates Steel, National Petroleum Construction Company, Arkan Building Materials, the date tree regulator Al Foah, the food and beverage firm Agthia, and Ducab, a manufacturing joint venture of Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Senaat is also developing two companies, Taweelah Aluminium Extrusion Company and Al Gharbia Pipe Company. In March, Senaat announced it would invest Dh5bn in the industrial sector over the next two years.

“Senaat has multiple investment plans and strategic projects in the pipeline which will contribute further to the diversification of Abu Dhabi’s industrial base and increasing the contribution of the non-oil industrial sector in the emirate’s GDP,” said Hussain Jasim Al Nowais the Senaat’s chairman.

He said the company would continue to fund its investments with its profits and the prudent use of debt.

The UAE aims to diversify its economy away from oil and gas, which makes up about 30 per cent of the country’s GDP, according to the Ministry of Economy.

The industrial sector is half the size of the oil and gas sector in terms of its GDP contribution, but the government plans to increase the size of the industrial sector by five percentage points over the next five years.

“We hope in the next 10 years to lower the oil sector’s contribution to the GDP through economic diversification and the development of important sectors, such as the services sector and the industrial sector through their greater contribution to the GDP,” Abdullah Al Saleh, the ministry’s undersecretary, said in April.

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