A word from the President
The French Foreign Trade Advisors, CCEF, are today around 4,500 businesswomen and men, volunteers, at the service of the development and economic influence of France. The CCEFs are present in all regions of France as well as in 150 countries around the world. They are selected based on their international experience and appointed by ministerial decree for a period of three years, renewable. Four main missions are entrusted to them by the French authorities: advising public authorities, supporting businesses, training young French graduates internationally and promoting the attractiveness of France.
The Bahrain CCEF chapter is made up of around fifteen business managers or independent entrepreneurs, representing different sectors of activity. Their knowledge of the local and regional economic environment and their sectoral expertise are made available to France and to French companies or entrepreneurs who plan to set up or export to Bahrain.
By virtue of our mandate, we are also responsible for promoting the V.I.E program (or the International Corporate Volunteer program) in companies and assisting young French graduates in their professional experiences abroad.
By construction, our chapter works very closely with the Embassy of France and its economic service. It has also established constructive relations with the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Bahrain as well as the public and private economic institutions of the country.
Bahrain, due to its small size and economic weight within the GCC region, is still too often overlooked even though the Kingdom offers a very favorable environment for business life, which makes it a destination of choice for French companies wishing to establish themselves in the Gulf region.
Bahrain’s economy is already one of the most diverse in the region and under the drive of local leadership. It is undergoing a vigorous transformation with the goal of further reducing the Kingdom’s fiscal dependence on oil revenues. Several large industrial projects are part of this strategy.
Bahrain is also leading a series of initiatives to make its environment even more welcoming to foreign investors. Its position as the Gateway to Saudi Arabia which remains the most important market in the region, its comparative advantage in terms of rates, its young, well-trained and eager to work population are all assets on which the country is looking into capitalizing.
Choosing Bahrain should consist, for our French companies, an option to be favored in their expansion plan or simply in setting up in the Gulf countries.
In November 2019, the Bahrain chapter joined with the Saudi Arabia chapter, as part of their regular interaction, to organize the annual CCEF Near and Middle East regional meeting. This two-day meeting took place in Bahrain,
This initiative brought together more than 100 participants: representatives of the Treasury Department, the National Committee of the CCEFs, the Economic Advisors of the Near & Middle East region and many CCEFs in the region had the opportunity to discuss the geopolitical environment, the economic and financial challenges of their country of residence and to discover the opportunities offered by the Bahrain market.
We remain at your disposal to assist you, advise you, and guide you in your projects in Bahrain, so do not hesitate to call on us!
PRESIDENT OF THE FRENCH FOREIGN TRADE ADVISORS – CHAIRMAN, BNP PARIBAS
Bahrain French Foreign Trade Advisors Committee