An increasingly interconnected MENA
1 year ago by Jack Evangelides

An increasingly interconnected MENA

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The Middle East and North Africa has never been an easy part of the world for outsiders to get to grips with. To make matters more challenging, the region is currently changing faster than at any other time in its history. Confirmation of this came recently with the publication of the “Digital in 2017� report, produced by We Are Social and Hootsuite, which revealed that internet uptake in the Middle East is growing faster than in any other region of the world at the moment. The report shows that internet penetration is increasing by around 15% year on year, with 60% of Middle Easterners now online. Needless to say, this figure varies greatly depending on where in the region you are. The UAE tops the rankings with 99% of people regularly using the internet and is closely followed by Qatar and Saudi Arabia. Social media use in the region grew by nearly 50% during 2016 and e-commerce is also booming, particularly in the GCC and Egypt. Investment in infrastructure in the less developed countries of the region is likely to lead to even greater rates of growth in the years to come.
All of this points to an enormous opportunity for online retailers, and not just from within the region. Consumer trends and regulatory changes around foreign ownership of businesses mean that the prospects for exporters and overseas companies looking to enter the market are improving dramatically. Given the allure of these quickly-developing markets, the temptation can be to rush in to grab as much of the pie as possible. However, given the pace of change and the challenges involved in setting up in a new market, operators are well advised to take every possible step to stay compliant with the relevant legislation. When you`re operating in a fast-moving and complex environment it pays to have people on your side who know what they`re doing. We provide the most comprehensive background checking and due diligence services currently available in the MENA region, with a bigger database of cross-referenced personal identification and company records than anybody else. That`s why some of the biggest companies in the world come to us when they need to find out who they`re dealing with, and why people are happy to rely our information in a region where KYC, AML and CTF compliance is critically important. See what we can do for you at www.cedar-rose.com.
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