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UAE retains ranking on logistics index; sector outlook upbeat

Egypt sees the largest jump of any emerging market in the index

Gulf News

Dubai: The United Arab Emirates retained its third position after China and India on the 2018 Agility Emerging Markets Logistics Index, a survey revealed, even as the logistics industry was upbeat about the sector for 2018 unlike last year.

The index, now in its ninth year, offers an annual snapshot of industry sentiment and ranks the world’s leading emerging markets by size, business conditions, and transport infrastructure and connections. It includes a survey of more than 500 global logistics executives.

“The UAE maintains its high ranking across several indices with its abundance of free trade zones, no corporation tax, the offer of full ownership and unlimited repatriation of profits still setting the benchmark for emerging markets. The countries in the region are moving aggressively to spur non-energy economic growth, create jobs, lure new investment, and develop knowledge economies,” said Elias Monem, chief executive officer of Agility Middle East and Africa.

According to the report, Saudi Arabia was down one place to number 6 due to worsening economic growth forecasts and financial stability.

Egypt moved up in rankings on the logistics index. The country jumped six spots this year to number 14, the largest jump of any emerging market in the index. “The government there has made a number of very difficult policy choices, including devaluation of the currency, that look set to pay off in increased growth, investment and employment,” Bassel Al Dabbagh, CEO Agility Abu Dhabi, told Gulf News by email.

Upbeat

People are upbeat about the logistics industry in the emerging markets this year. “Quite often in past years, our survey respondents have been gloomier than the IMF [International Monetary Fund], and more often than not the IMF has later revised its forecasts downward, proving the industry right. This year it’s notable that two-thirds of the 500 Index survey respondents concur with an outlook that is rosy and calls for expanded growth,” Al Dabbagh said.

The IMF revised global growth forecast to 4.9 per cent in October 2017 from the earlier forecast of 4.8 per cent.

[BOX] Agility gets regulatory nod

DUBAI: Agility said in a statement posted on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) on Monday that it has received a regulatory approval to buy and sell its treasury shares in Kuwait. The approval is for the next six months from the date of approval, the company said. Agility’s shares closed flat at Dh8.68 in a weak Dubai market on Monday.

-S. S. M.

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