Dubai: Dubai’s external trade in the first quarter of 2020 reached Dh323 billion. Exports grew 2 per cent to Dh43 billion compared to the corresponding quarter last year while imports accounted for Dh189 billion and re-exports touched Dh92 billion deonstrating the resilience of Dubai economy in the face of global economic headwinds caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.
The volume of Dubai’s external non-oil trade reached 24 million tons - imports accounted for 16 million tons, exports 4.2 million tons, and re-exports 3.6 million tons in the first quarter of 2020.
Resilent to challenges
“Dubai has demonstrated its economic resilience amidst the global COVID-19 crisis. Though the pandemic has impacted markets around the world, Dubai’s external trade has been able to maintain its momentum thanks to the diversity of its markets and its ability to adapt to global changes, trends and needs,” said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council.
“We are reaping the benefits of what our leadership has sown. From an early stage, our leadership invested in developing infrastructure and advanced technology that have enabled us to be resilient amidst crises and turn challenges into opportunities.”
Direct trade in Q1 2020 reached Dh188 billion while trade out of free zones reached Dh133 billion, and customs warehouse trade accounted for Dh2 billion. Land trade contributed Dh4 billion, sea trade Dh116 billion, and air trade Dh163 billion.
Dubai has demonstrated its economic resilience amidst the global COVID-19 crisis. Though the pandemic has impacted markets around the world, Dubai’s external trade has been able to maintain its momentum thanks to the diversity of its markets and its ability to adapt to global changes, trends and needs.
“To support businesses during this difficult time, we announced a stimulus package plan which included a refund of 20 per cent of the customs fees imposed on imported products sold locally in Dubai markets from 15 March to 30 June. The package also includes the cancellation of the Dh50,000 bank guarantee or cash required to undertake customs clearance activity. Bank guarantee or cash paid by existing customs clearance companies will be refunded,” said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed.
Against all odds and despite the many challenges and hurdles facing the world market due to the outbreak of COVID-19, customs transactions in Dubai skyrocketed 60 per cent to reach 4 million in Q1 2020, from 2.5 million in the corresponding quarter last year. This reflects the resilience of the Dubai economy and its ability to cope with changes and challenges.
“Dubai’s strong customs structure helped achieve a 60 per cent increase in customs transactions despite the challenging global environment, growing from 2.5 million transactions in Q1 2019 to 4 million transactions this year. This makes Dubai one of the best customs and logistics hubs in the world, and a very attractive environment for foreign investments and businesses. Thanks to a number of government strategies and stimulus plans, Dubai remains credible and trustful in the eyes of investors and businesses worldwide,” said Sultan bin Sulayem, DP World Group Chairman & CEO and Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation.
Top trade partners
China remained Dubai’s largest trading partner, contributing Dh35.8 billion, followed by India contributing Dh30.4 billion, and the USA with Dh19.5 billion.
The highest traded commodity by value in 2019 was precious metals and stones. Gold, jewelry and diamonds trade grew 2 per cent to Dh92 billion, followed by phones with Dh38 billion, and petroleum oils which contributed Dh16 billion.