May 9 2013
Located in the northernmost region of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the sheikdom Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) has become a hotspot for tourism and business activity. With tons of tourist attractions, lower cost of living and great incentives for foreign businesses and investors, it is no wonder that this region has become so popular.
In recent years, under the rule of His Highness Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ras Al Khaimah has successfully recovered from the credit crisis that affected countries across the globe. Since its economic rebound, RAK has rebranded itself as a top tourism destination in the United Arab Emirates.
A Tourism Hotspot
For tourists, Ras Al Khaimah offers affordability, breathtaking scenery, abundant activities and world-class dining. The savings start from the moment a visitor books a flight. With its own national carrier, RAK is able to offer inexpensive flights across the region as well as back and forth to Britain. After arriving at RAK, tourists can choose from an array of luxurious yet affordable beach-front hotels that provide spectacular views of the Arabian Gulf. Other attractions include world-class golf courses, parasailing, Iceland Water Park, aquatic adventures, motor racing, horseback riding and more.
When Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi took office in 2003, he made social and economic reform his primary concerns. These changes have lead to a rapid increase in tourism activity in the past three years. Since 2011, the number of annual visitors to Ras Al Khaimah has increased from 885,000 to an estimated 1.2 million. This rapidly growing tourism industry has begun to attract the attention of major hotel chains including Waldorf-Astoria and Doubletree.
Attractive Business Opportunities
In addition to attracting an increasing number of tourists, the emirate and Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi have also been receiving attention from businesses across the globe. With its stable political setting and thriving economy, RAK was awarded the title of “Most Attractive Place in the Middle East for FDI” by the Financial Times in 2009. Since then, this region has frequently been compared to popular financial centers like New York, London and Mumbai.
Thanks to Sheikh Saud Bin Saqr Al Qasimi and his progressive approach to business, Ras Al Khaimah has created incentives to draw foreign businesses and investors to the region. These benefits are administered by the Investment and Development Office of the Ras Al Khaimah and include perks like 100 percent exemptions on corporate and income taxes, 100 percent capital and profit repatriation and a huge network of promotional centers throughout the UAE, Asia, Europe and the United States.
A Rising Emirate
With more affordable amenities and living costs than other UAE areas like Dubai, Ras Al Khaimah has become an increasingly popular destination for both tourists and businesses. That surge is expected to continue as more resorts, tourist attractions and business opportunities expand throughout Ras Al Khaimah. It’s no wonder that the diverse emirate is now known as “A Rising Emirate.”