Dubai just announced plans to establish a district dedicated to developing the emerging sector of fashion, design and retail.
His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced on Saturday that the “Dubai Design District” would be situated adjacent to the Business Bay area of the city.
The district is expected to become a full service commercial hub for design industry-related organizations, brands and supporting enterprises within the value chain.
A statement from the Government of Dubai Media Office said that it would feature a custom-built creative community that would include purpose-built commercial and retail facilities for established and emerging designers, design institutes, a waterfront promenade, a convention center, event venues and related academic institutions.
The new initiative would help Dubai to compete with fashion capitals like London, Paris, Milan, New York and Singapore.
An increasing number of UAE nationals and expatriates are showing keen interest in developing their creative skills, which has resulted in rapid growth in the enrollment rates for fashion and design courses in the UAE.
Esmod Dubai, the only institute fully dedicated to fashion education in the UAE, said the wise decision would prop up the retail district with institutes of international standards that can produce enough designers to service the industry.
“While the UAE retail sector needs to stay ahead of its fashion market by dealing in international brands, which local and tourist consumers can also find in other countries, the need of the hour is to develop a long-term strategic vision to deliver local brands of professional quality to fashion-savvy consumers. Such a vision to develop a real UAE fashion identity that can compete in the fashion international market will take the nation a long way forward,” said Tamara Hostal, CEO of Esmod Dubai, a branch of Paris-headquartered Esmod International.
“Such an initiative will also attract worldwide buyers as well as professional fashion fairs, such as Who’s Next, that could put Dubai’s name high on the list of key international business destinations.”