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Hatta’s economic transformation inspires new generation of entrepreneurs

Hatta’s economic transformation inspires new generation of entrepreneurs
22 Jan 2024 23:59


Hatta, renowned for its enchanting landscapes, rich heritage, and idyllic lifestyle, is undergoing an economic transformation driven by a comprehensive development plan.

Apart from large-scale projects, the region’s changing economic outlook is being shaped by the Dubai government's commitment to nurturing the potential of its people, particularly the youth. With a focus on advancing sustainable development and entrepreneurship, the government is inspiring a new generation to dream big and start enterprising ventures.

Catalysing Hatta’s entrepreneurial surge is an ambitious plan set out by the Mohammed bin Rashid Establishment for Small and Medium Enterprises Development (Dubai SME) to support startups in the region in 2023.

Dubai SME, a part of the Dubai Department of Economy and Tourism (DET), is following through on the leadership’s directives to instil confidence in Hatta’s youth about their own business ideas and entrepreneurial acumen and to empower them to implement new creative approaches, ultimately benefiting the region and its communities.

Specialised programmes

Dubai SME has been actively organising training courses and specialised programmes to lend direction to young entrepreneurs in Hatta on setting up or expanding their own businesses and the results have been extremely encouraging. It conducted 21 workshops and specialised diplomas in entrepreneurship for the commercial and agricultural sectors. These programmes have attracted impressive participation from across the region, with the commercial diploma being highly sought-after. The high enrolment in these programmes indicates a robust interest in food and beverages (FB), tourism and technology courses. Courses in creative entrepreneurial thinking, entrepreneurial leadership, creativity management, and e-commerce have also generated significant interest.

Dubai SME has supported the issuance of 45 fee-exempt commercial licences for startups in Hatta to date. This unwavering backing has encouraged entrepreneurial activities in the region, reducing entry barriers for new businesses, and promoting economic innovation.

New business success stories are emerging in Hatta’s diverse sectors ranging from food, farms, services, tourism and leisure establishments to construction and contracting, fitness centres, blacksmithing, carpentry, aluminium fabrication, among many more. An apiary project in Hatta’s higher reaches has really taken off after initially setting up with loans from Dubai SME and later receiving further financial support for expansion. The Al Doror for Honey and Dates Trade facility boasts a production capacity of more than 20 tonnes of honey annually. This project has become a key contributor to the local agriculture sector, especially in terms of promoting trade in honey and dates.

Hatta Kayak is another company that has been making waves locally with its suite of services focused on tourism and community activities. Dubai SME backed the company in obtaining necessary operational approvals and business licensing and there has been no looking back ever since. This venture too has contributed to local economic and community development.

A restaurant project specialising in local dishes has also become very popular. Having already expanded operations, Tanoor Restaurant provides its customers a unique dining experience with a distinctive ambience that highlights the local culture. Another notable success set up with Dubai SME’s help is Hur Hatta for Salon Supplies Trade, which provides beauty supplies, tools, perfumes, and non-pharmaceutical preparations to licensed salons in Hatta.

Abdul Baset Al Janahi, CEO of Dubai SME, highlighted the integrated plan to enable young entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas and build successful ventures.

“Dubai SME stands steadfastly behind Emirati entrepreneurs and businesses, facilitating the financial and technical assistance they may require at every turn. Even after businesses find their feet, Dubai SME is always at hand to enable them to spread their wings, infusing additional capital or providing necessary training. Dubai SME’s support for entrepreneurial talent in Hatta organically boosts the absorption of local talent into the workforce across various key sectors while also meeting objectives of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33."

“Dubai SME is ever open to new investment opportunities that foster a spirit of entrepreneurship and empower emerging business leaders. It is a natural ally of entrepreneurs whether it be in terms of strategic initiatives or mentorship or resources. Fiscal support is just one criterion when it comes to new businesses; they also need to find harmonious opportunities for knowledge sharing and networking besides a nurturing ecosystem that allows for ideas to develop into successful ventures. Such efforts also go towards strengthening the D33’s key goal of consolidating Dubai’s position among the top three urban economies globally in the next decade,” Al Janahi added.

Diverse showcase

The Hatta Festival organised recently by Brand Dubai, the Government of Dubai Media Office’s creative arm, provided more than a glimpse of the growing presence of local businesses in Hatta. Held as part of the festival, the ‘Proudly from Dubai Market’ featured many products from Hatta-based companies.

The market featured 30 UAE companies affiliated with the ‘Proudly from Dubai’ network, showcasing an assortment of unique product lines and refreshing culinary concepts. The fact that more than half of the businesses at the market originated in Hatta is a testament to the entrepreneurial vigour driving the region's future.

Hatta-based firms took part in the event in partnership with the Hatta Traders Council and Dubai’s Community Development Authority. In all, 16 food and beverage establishments and 14 businesses showcasing diverse products participated, displaying everything from apparel, fabric and accessories to candles, perfumes, match a powder and coffee beans.

Source: WAM
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