Subscribe
SIGN UP   |   LOG IN

HEALTH & WEALTH

Sharjah 2016 | HEALTH & EDUCATION | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to HE Abdulla Ali Al Mahyan, Chairman of the Sharjah Health Authority, on the development of Sharjah Healthcare City, the benefits of operating in the free zone, and attracting more FDI to the Emirate.

HE Abdulla Ali Al Mahyan
BIOGRAPHY
HE Abdulla Ali Al Mahyan heads the Sharjah Health Authority and Sharjah Healthcare City (SHCC), functioning as Chairman of both authorities. He is also a member of the Sharjah Executive Council and Chairman of Board of Trustees of Sharjah University Hospital. Al Mahyan graduated in business management and administration in 1994 and started his career with different government authorities and free zones in various capacities. When the Sharjah Health Authority was formed in 2010, Al Mahyan was appointed as chairman and took over the responsibilities of establishing a proper healthcare system in the Emirate as well as promoting healthcare-related FDI into the Emirate.

How did the Sharjah Healthcare City (SHCC) come about, and how has it developed the healthcare sector in the region?

In accordance with the vision of HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, to transform the Emirate into a regional healthcare hub, the decision was made to launch a healthcare city where healthcare and related activities from the world are allowed. The SHCC was formed in March 2012 and will cover about 2.5million sqm, with the primary phase to be developed being over 500,000sqm. The SHCC will be located beside Sharjah International Airport.

What are the main advantages for investors now that SHCC operates as a free zone?

The SHCC operates as a free zone and thus investors can enjoy 100% ownership of their entity, zero tax and duties, 100% repatriation of capital and profits, single-window service, hassle-free licensing, world-class infrastructure, and so on. In fact, investors are not required to meet with any other external agencies as all approvals, including the FZ company registration and licensing, leasing of facilities, facility licensing, professional licensing, and so on, will be done by the Sharjah Health Authority.

It is estimated that the healthcare sector will grow 9.3% between 2012 and 2018. How do you assess the current level of healthcare in the region?

With the growing population of Sharjah and the adjoining Emirates, which is expected to reach 2.7 million by 2025, there is an acute need for more healthcare facilities and the overall healthcare industry is expected to grow considerably in the region. Setting up specialized surgery centers, cancer centers, advanced diagnostics, rehab centers, cardiac care centers, and neurology centers, which are currently limited or lacking, represents an excellent opportunity for investors. The scope of healthcare-related investments in the region is enormous. The demand for hospital beds across the GCC is expected to rise, with the UAE registering the highest projected growth in demand for hospital beds at 160% by 2025. By 2020, the GCC may require in excess of 25,000 additional beds with the current level of care.

What's your strategy in terms of attracting FDI to the SHCC?

The SHCC heavily promotes the investment opportunities available among the targeted healthcare community across the globe. Various ways of bilateral cooperation are under discussion with other countries as well. Currently, we are focused on developing the primary phase comprising half a million sqm, which will have clinical-office buildings, small and medium hospitals, and rehab centers along with world-class infrastructure and single window administrative support. Upon completion of the primary phase Sharjah will house a variety of healthcare facilities and our future strategy is to engage in health tourism with the proximity of two excellent international airports.

What are your goals and targets for the year ahead?

We expect to complete the master plan this year with a detailed infrastructure study. Construction of both a clinical building and an office tower are also expected to commence by the end of the year. Land leasing is expected to commence by next year. We aim to attract to the SHCC from the beginning: large and medium-sized hospitals, single and multi-doctor clinics, traditional healing centers, healthcare centers, laboratories, biotechnology research centers, yoga and wellness centers, spas, counseling centers, rehabilitation centers and representative offices, storage and trading of medical-related equipment and disposables, and housing units and hospitality centers.


 

Want to read the full interview?

Purchase

this article now for GBP9.99

or
Subscribe Today

to access this article and all
our other premium content

Already have an account with us?

Forgot User ID / Password

or connect with

LinkedIn
defer defer defer defer defer defer defer defer defer