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Dubai Chamber creates new restaurants business group to support the industry

Dubai Chamber creates new restaurants business group to support the industry

Restaurants Business Group will support the restaurant sector as it emerges from Covid-19

A new restaurant group has been formed under the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, as the food and beverage sector emerges from Covid-19.

The Restaurants Business Group, operating as a non-profit body under the umbrella of Dubai Chamber, will serve common interests and jointly seek to tackle sector challenges through co-operation with relevant authorities in the emirate.

The group also provides a platform for member companies to share knowledge and make policy recommendations to improve ease of doing business in the sector.

Mubarak Bin Fahad, the owner of The Tashas Group, was appointed as the founding chairman of the group during a recent virtual meeting.

Bin Fahd noted that in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, industry players are coming together to address common challenges, embracing innovation and creating new delivery platforms. “The Dubai Restaurants Business Group will help this cause, bringing the private and public sectors closer together to create a sustainable and even more positive future for the F&B industry in the city,” he added.

According to a MENA Research Partners study released in 2019, the food and beverage market in the GCC was forecast to grow around 7.1 per cent annually, reaching $196bn (Dhs719.3bn) in 2021 from $130bn (Dhs477.1bn) in 2018.

But the sector has been one of the hardest hit by Covid-19.

In a letter addressed to Abdulla Mohammed Al Basti, secretary-general of the Dubai Executive Council in May of this year, F&B sector stakeholders said “nobody in hospitality expects to get back to anything like normal pre-Covid-19 until Q1 2021 at the earliest”.

At the time, the F&B outlets in Dubai – which employ up to 10 per cent of the emirate’s population – were facing monthly losses of up to Dhs1bn in staff salaries, housing and benefits, according to the letter. That figure did not include rents and operational costs.

Most restaurants have since resumed operations, although social-distancing rules have kept numbers low.

Read: Dubai’s F&B outlets say they are losing over Dhs1bn on a monthly basis

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