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Mon 28 Dec 2015 01:59 PM

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Bahrain's $100m Dragon City mall opens for business

New Chinese-themed shopping mall hosts more than 500 companies; site also includes market, warehouses and restaurants

Bahrain's $100m Dragon City mall opens for business

Bahrain's Dragon City, a new Chinese-themed shopping mall hosting more than 500 companies, has opened for business, it has been announced.

The mall, managed by the China Middle East Investment and Trade Promotion Centre (Chinamex) and located in Diyar Al Muharraq, aims to raise the profile of Chinese products across the GCC, as well as aim to increase the number of regional visitors to the kingdom, a statement said.

The Bahrain Dragon City site includes a 50,000 sq m market, along with a warehouse facility, a leisure complex and restaurants which aims to strengthen family tourism, the statement added.

Officials said the logistics and warehousing facilities will enable the Chinese companies present to take full advantage of Bahrain’s transport infrastructure, including the Bahrain International Airport and sea ports.

China’s East Star Group has already announced it has invested a further $10 million at the Bahrain Dragon City to build an 18,000 sq m storage facility.

Khalid Al Rumaihi, chief executive of Bahrain's economic development board (EDB), said: “The EDB has made attracting Chinese businesses to the kingdom a top priority and we are extremely proud to see the Bahrain Dragon City open for business.

"As a regional tourism hub attracting millions of visitors each year, Bahrain, being a gateway to the GCC market, allows GCC visitors ease of entry into the Kingdom whether through the King Fahd Causeway or Bahrain International Airport, which provides a large network of flights to and from the GCC capitals.” 

Hao Feng, chairman of Chinamex, added: “Bahrain was chosen as the location for our latest Dragon City project due to the kingdom’s liberal business environment, including 100 percent foreign ownership, low costs and competitive taxes.

"Bahrain’s location at the heart of the Gulf and its position as a regional centre for business, trade and tourism also give our tenants an unrivalled opportunity to sell their products across the region, particularly in Saudi Arabia, the biggest economy in the GCC, which is just a short drive across the King Fahd Causeway.”

Al Rumaihi said the Bahrain Dragon City is the latest example of the role Bahrain is playing under China’s flagship international economic policy, ‘One Belt, One Road’, to help Chinese businesses access opportunities in the fast growing Gulf and wider Middle East region.

A large number of leading Chinese companies have already established facilities in Bahrain or are using the kingdom as their regional headquarters, including Huawei, Bank of China, China Harbour Engineering Company Ltd, China CommService and CPIC.

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