First Flight’s decision to locate in Bahrain reflects the Kingdom’s established position as a region allogistics and transportation hub. Strategically located at the heart of the Gulf, Bahrain has long been considered the gateway to the region, with easy access to the large economies of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar. With excellent transport infrastructure, and the causeway linking Bahrain to Saudi Arabia, Bahrain’s logistics industry has been growing fast in response to increasing demand from businesses.
Kamal bin Ahmed, Minister of Transportation and Acting Chief Executive of the Bahrain Economic Development Board, said: “We welcome First Flight’s decision to extend their presence in the Middle East by opening an office in Bahrain. Transport and logistics play an important role in our economy, not justthrough the jobs that they create directly, but by the way that they facilitate trade across Bahrain and the wider Middle East.We continue to invest significantly in logistics infrastructure and we are proud of the increasing number of companies taking advantage of Bahrain’s excellent regional and international transport links.”
Mr. Johnson Mooda Thomas, Managing Director of First Flight Couriers (Middle East) commented: “There is very strong potential for growth in the Middle Eastern market, and in particular the trillion-dollar Gulf economies. With the shortest travel time between its seaport, airport and the logistics processing zones of anywhere in the Gulf, we think that Bahrain offers us the best location from which to access that opportunity.”
The Kingdom has made, and continues to make, significant investments in its logistics infrastructure, and the industry is set to flourish in the coming years as cargo volumes in the Gulf increases. Significant infrastructure projects include: The Khalifa bin Salman Port, Bahrain Logistics Zone, Bahrain International Airport expansion projects, Salman Industrial City Project, Bahrain International Investment Park and the planned rail and road bridge to Qatar. Bahrain is ranked second in the Middle East and 32nd of 155 economies worldwide in the World Bank’s Global Logistics Performance Index 2010.
First Flight is one of several Indian businesses that have opened offices in Bahrain since the start of 2011, including Bahrain Financial Exchange (BFX), a wholly owned initiative of Financial Technologies Group, and Canara Bank. Other Indian firms that have established operations in Bahrain include State Bank of India and Tata Consulting Services.
The EDB – which played a pivotal role in First Flight’s setting up process - is a dynamic public agency with an overall responsibility for attracting inward investment into Bahrain, and is focusing on target economic sectors in which the Kingdom offers significant strengths. The EDB played an instrumental role in attracting over US$300 million of investment from international businesses across a wide range of sectors in 2011.
Notes to editors
About First Flight Couriers Ltd.
First Flightwas founded in 1986 and has offices all over India . It was a pioneer in the Indian logistics sector with the company recognising the market potential of the Indian Subcontinent. The company is now India’
About The Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB)
The Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) is a dynamic public agency with an overall responsibility for attracting inward investment into Bahrain, and is focusing on target economic sectors in which the Kingdom offers significant strengths.
Key areas of focus include manufacturing, ICT, and logistics and transport services as well as other sub-sectors. The Financial Services sector in Bahrain is particularly strong and the EDB supports in the continuing growth of the banking industry and key sub-sectors, including Islamic Finance, Asset Management, Insurance and Re-Insurance.
For more information on the Bahrain EDB visit www.bahrainedb.com;