Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 15 May 2018: DP World, UAE Region including Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) has reaffirmed its position as the region's top trade and logistics hub by generating 29.4 million Metric Tonnes (MT) of trade, valued at $83.1 billion in 2017.
The figures contribute 23% to the total value of trade in Dubai, 70% of the value of all Dubai's free zone trade combined and has increased 4% year on year.
The volume of trade amounts to 97% of Dubai's total free zone trade, 32% of Dubai's total trade and has seen a 6% increase in trade year-on-year.The total traded volume of 29.4 million MT is the highest since 2013.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO, DP World, said: “This is a proud moment for Jafza as our free zone continues to lead Dubai's trade sector maintaining its positions as a regional and global business and logistics hub of choice.
Last year's growth was achieved against the headwinds of an economic slowdown across the world.
The sustained growth of Jafza since 2013 across diverse sectors demonstrates its ability to leverage key market dynamics to create growth opportunities for our customers. Most critically, it shows that the Dubai and the UAE's economy continues to be healthy and flexible, capable of successfully weathering and adapting to the changing patterns of international trade and global economics.
“The growth in Jafza's trade volume and value reflects the wisdom of the government's economic diversification goals, which we have integrated into our business strategy. Diversification creates investment opportunities, while driving competition and innovation.”
Over 77%of Jafza's total trade volume in 2017 was generated by three sectors: oil and gas; foodstuff, livestock and agricultural products; and metal, steel and construction material.
Meanwhile, 76%of the trade value was derived from five sectors: electronics and electricals, vehicle and transport, retail and general trading, oil and gas, and machinery and equipment
“Jebel Ali Port and Free Zone is incentivising businesses to base their operations in Jafza by offering a seamless and multi-modal logistics corridor, connected by an electronic port community system for ease of doing business.
The ability to handle high volumes of trade efficiently, quickly and cost effectively while connecting traders to the global supply chain has made it the preferred hub in the Middle East for businesses.
“As an integral member of the DP World group, Jafza is committed to supporting Dubai and the UAE's on-going economic diversification drive by pioneering innovative processes, customer-focused services, and policies that add value for stakeholders, and fuel the growth of companies operating here.” Bin Sulayem added
Jafza's top markets by region were the Middle East at 40%, Asia at 31% and Europe at 13%.
China remains Jafza's largest trade partner as Chinese firms continue to use the free zone as their regional base for exports and re-exports of goods.
Saudi Arabia was the second largest trade partner, followed by USA, Vietnam and India.