Image Credit: Supplied

Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) won top laurels earlier this month at the 10th edition of the prestigious fDi Global Free Zones of the Year Awards 2023, part of the annual fDi Magazine awards hosted by the Financial Times Group, London. Jafza won several awards including the Excellence Award for Sustainability. As the UAE readies to host COP28 next month, we highlight key drivers at Jafza that make sustainable growth a priority.

Recognition for Jafza at FDI Awards

Excellence Award for Sustainability Winner – Global

Excellence Award for Non-Fiscal Incentives Winner – Global

Industrial Champion Winner – Middle East

About Jafza

As the flagship free zone of DP World, Jafza is an integral part of DP World, the UAE Region’s business hub. Having evolved into a smart business community and a catalyst for trade, Jafza offers unprecedented growth opportunity and market access to stakeholders.


Percentage growth in new customer registrations @ Jafza in 2022


Number of companies that Jafza serves as a strategic hub for business


No. of Fortune 500 companies operating in Jafza


Annual trade generated by Jafza

Holistic approach to sustainability

As Dubai and the UAE get set to host the world at COP28 next month, the nation is ensuring its collective efforts towards sustainability and net zero are clear to see. As a vital economic engine for the UAE economy, Jafza plays a major role in supporting the UAE’s net zero objectives. The free zone has set the goal to be carbon neutral by 2040 and net zero carbon by 2050, with an interim 2030 target of a 28 per cent reduction in carbon footprint (from 2019 baseline).

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As one of the largest logistics and manufacturing free zones globally, attached to one of the world’s busiest ports, Jafza has long-standing commitments and a track record of supporting sustainability initiatives.

Addressing sustainability concerns within its local context, Jafza particularly supports the growth of a robust local agribusiness sector. As a free zone responsible for 20 per cent of Dubai’s F&B trade value, Jafza aligns its objectives with the National Food Security Strategy 2051. The free zone is home to over 600 food and agri-commodity companies from 68 countries.

Furthermore, the UAE’s manufacturing industry is gaining momentum as companies seek to broaden their operations and extend their global presence. Supporting the cause, Jafza’s manufacturing hub hosts over 790 companies from various sectors, including food & beverages, healthcare, petrochemicals, and pharmaceuticals.

Jafza sustainability & green initiatives

Jafza is committed to supporting the transition to clean energy as part of DP World’s overall sustainability strategy

• Jafza’s clean energy transition includes emission reduction targets of 28% in carbon footprint by 2030 and net zero by 2050

• Jafza’s green energy projects include the largest rooftop solar installation in ME with >158,000 solar panels

• Solar installation helps save 48,000 tons of emissions per year & produce >30% of Jafza’s annual electricity requirements

• Continuing the solar drive, Jafza invested Dh105 million in major retrofit projects to install solar water heaters and implement methods to reduce water consumption

• Jafza among first regional free zones to install energy-efficient LED streetlights at a cost of Dh80 million

Integrated ecosystems for key industries

Automotive and spare parts



Food and agriculture

Health care and pharmaceuticals

Retail and e-commerce

Key offerings

Ready-to-move-in plots

Purpose-built warehouses

End-to-end logistics solutions provide market access to >3.5 billion people, making Jafza the leading trade and logistics hub in ME