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Free zones account for 32% of Dubai’s trade

Dubai direct trade worth Dh830b in 2016, with free zone trade at Dh411b

Gulf News

Dubai: Dubai’s direct trade stood at Dh830 billion in 2016, with free zone trade worth Dh411.44 billion and customs warehouse trade worth Dh34.76 billion.

In percentage terms, direct trade stood at 65 per cent of total trade, with free zones providing 32 per cent, and customs warehousing for 3 per cent.

Dubai saw an increase of 8.2 per cent in the bulk weight of trade goods in 2016, rising from 85 million tonnes in 2016 to 92 million tonnes.

Air cargo accounted for 46 per cent of trade by value (Dh592 billion), with sea freight accounting for 35 per cent (Dh452 billion) and inland trade 18 per cent (Dh232 billion).

Ahmad Bin Sulayem, DP World Chairman and CEO and Chairman of the Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, said, “Thanks to the vision of Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid [Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai], the emirate succeeded in increasing the bulk weight of commodities in 2016 against all odds.

“Dubai could contain the impact of fluctuations in currency exchange rates and political turmoil and maintained a robust trade position. We are moving steadily to achieve the goals of UAE Vision 2021 and Dubai Plan 2021.”

Mobile phones and communication devices were the most traded commodity, with a total value of Dh167 billion (13.1 per cent of total trade). Gold was second, with a value of Dh156 billion (12 per cent), followed by diamonds (Dh97 billion, 7.6 per cent) and jewellery (Dh63 billion, 4.9 per cent).

Cars were the fifth most-traded product, with a value of Dh60 billion (4.7 per cent).

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