The inauguration of the GE Kuwait Technology Center is a major milestone in Kuwait’s strategic effort to attract multinational firms to Kuwait with the objective of attracting technology, creating high value added jobs, and growing the ecosystem that promotes business formation, said Ali H. Khalil, Chief Operating Officer of Kuwait Financial Centre (Markaz).
Kuwait Direct Investment Promotion Authority (KDIPA), established under Law 116 of 2013, supported the establishment of the GE Center in Kuwait. “KDIPA acted not only as a licensor, but its staff worked with a private sector mindset to coordinate with the various government licensing entities; providing GE with the necessary support to navigate through formal processes. Foreign and local companies can expect the same level of support from KDIPA provided they meet Kuwait’s strategic objective, e.g. improvement in technology, creation of jobs, building a local ecosystem, and contributing to the diversification of the Kuwait economy. The GE Kuwait Technology Center is an early indicator of the success that can be achieved by KDIPA’s energetic and proactive team going forward”, he added.
Markaz has been GE’s financial advisor from concept phase of the project and helped formulate the business plan and the implementation roadmap. Mr. Khalil noted that Markaz’s cooperation with GE started in 2013 with the objective of identifying high quality projects in Kuwait for GE to invest in.
Mr. Khalil added: “The opening of the center in Kuwait is a key milestone for our mandate with GE and we are excited about numerous joint opportunities and potential areas of cooperation going forward. Markaz has a unique capability to understand the needs of multinationals: understanding their complex financial and operational objectives, and asist in overcoming their legal and tax constraints, and tailor make a solution that optimizes the outcome. In addition, our team has the local know-how that enables us to understand the business environment in Kuwait.”
The GE Kuwait Tech Center will transfer technology, expertise, and knowledge to the regional power sector through provision of professional training and specialized engineering services. The Center will also serve the tooling needs of power-sector clients across Middle East and Africa. It will feature a significant open facility with a large generator and steam and gas turbines for operational training and maintenance rehearsals. Another key element of the Center is the engineering research lab that will host state-of-the-art computer simulators and testing labs which will aid in improving the understanding of power generation operations and troubleshooting methodologies in hot and harsh environments.
Established in 1974, Kuwait Financial Centre K.P.S.C “Markaz” is one of the leading asset management and investment banking institutions in the Region with total assets under management of over KD 943 million as of June 30th, 2016. Markaz was listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) in 1997.