Dubai is making steps to complete with the world’s biggest fashion capitals, starting with the Dubai Design and Fashion Council – The Industry investigates.
Last week Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum ordered the country to set up their very own version of the British Fashion Council. Based in the United Arab Emirates, the initiative will be correspondingly christened the Dubai Design and Fashion Council.
Taking these similarities into consideration, there’s no doubt about the fact that Dubai has its sights set on a place in the ‘Big Four’. “Dubai’s design and fashion industry has a great opportunity to put itself on an equal footing with the likes of London, Paris and New York,” explained future committee member, Dr Amina Al Rustamani last week. With no mention of Italy, could it be that the city is preying on Milan’s spot?
Whilst there’s no real threat of that at the moment, Dubai’s future is looking bright. Only recently, the Business of Fashion published a feature that pinpointed the nascent market as a “super-regional power house in the making”. It houses the highest concentration of luxury retailers in the world (second only to Hong Kong), the economy is on the up and by 2015 its set to surpass London in terms of tourism. All these facts undeniably set Dubai in good stead.
According to press, the council has already devised parts of a strategy that include key objectives such as raising international appetite for both regional and Emirati design products, fostering small and medium sized businesses to growth and eventually generating more jobs in the sector.
Business leaders have welcomed the news, seeing it as a good thing for the economy as a whole. “As we look towards 2020, furthering the development of the creative industries is an important element of the broadening of Dubai’s offer,” Helal Saeed Almarri, director general of the Dubai Department of Commerce Marketing explained. “Retail has always been one of Dubai’s main attractions for tourists and with fashion a critical component of this, the establishment of the Dubai Design and Fashion Council is an important step in the expansion of this sector.”