Dubai: Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) recorded $83.1 billion (Dh305.2 billion) in trade in 2017, accounting for 23 per cent of the total trade value in Dubai.
According to a statement from operator DP World, trade values in Jafza were 4 per cent higher compared to 2016, and accounted for 70 per cent of the value of all Dubai’s free zone trade.
The total volume of trade reached 29.4 million metric tonnes, the highest since 2013.
Over 77 per cent of total trade volume in Jafza came from three sectors: oil and gas; foodstuff, livestock, and agriculture products; and metal, steel, and construction materials.
In terms of trade value, 76 per cent of the total value came from electronics, vehicles, retail, oil and gas, and machinery and equipment.
“Last year’s growth was achieved against the headwinds of an economic slowdown across the world,” said Sultan Bin Sulayem, group chairman and chief executive officer of DP 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.”
Jafza’s top markets were the Middle East, which accounted for 40 per cent of trade, Asia (31 per cent), and Europe (13 per cent).
China remained Jafza’s largest trade partner as Chinese firms continue to use the free zone as their regional base for exports and re-exports. Saudi Arabia was the second largest trade partner, followed by the USA, Vietnam, and India.
“Jebel Ali Port and Free Zone is incentivising businesses to base their operations in Jafza by offering a seamless and multi-model logistics corridor, connected by an electric port community system for ease of doing business,” DP World’s Bin Sulayem said in a statement.