Bahrain’s Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) inflows increased by USD1.766 billion in 2021, marking a 73% year-on-year increase and surpassing the global FDI average growth, according to the 2022 World Investment Report issued by the United Nations Conference of Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in June.
According to the report, Bahrain’s inward FDI stocks increased by 6% from 2020, reaching USD33.47 billion in 2021. This represented 86% of GDP, ranking Bahrain as the highest in GCC and surpassing the global average of 47%. The Information & eGovernment Authority of Bahrain said investment in 2021 was primarily directed at financial services, manufacturing and mining and quarrying industries.
The World Investment Report focuses on FDI trends at a regional and country level, as well as emerging measures to improve its contribution to economic development. It highlighted that global FDI has recovered to pre-pandemic levels in 2021 and has reached USD1.6 trillion, an increase of 64% due to booming merger and acquisition activity, as well as rapid growth in international project finance from loose financing and major infrastructure stimulus packages.
Chief Executive of the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) Khalid Humaidan said: “We’re proud of the progress achieved in 2021 and we look forward to achieving greater heights by attracting more direct investments across a diverse number of economic sectors, in line with the objectives set under Bahrain’s Economic Recovery Plan.”
In 2021, the EDB attracted USD839 million in direct investment into Bahrain through successful projects that are expected to create a total of 4,861 local jobs, including Citi’s first MENA tech hub.