Dubai’s non-oil external trade reaches Dhs551 billion in H1 2020 - GulfToday

Dubai’s non-oil external trade reaches Dhs551 billion in H1 2020


Imports accounted for Dhs320 billion, exports Dhs77 billion, and re-exports stood at Dhs154 billion. WAM

Business Bureau, Gulf Today

Dubai recorded Dhs551 billion worth of non-oil external trade in the first half of 2020. The emirate’s ability to minimise the impact of the pandemic-induced global economic slowdown on its trading sector reflects its exceptional logistics infrastructure, which enabled it to maintain uninterrupted trade flows and a streamlined supply chain.

Imports accounted for Dhs320 billion, exports Dhs77 billion, and re-exports Dhs154 billion. A total volume of 44 million tonnes of goods were traded through Dubai including 30 million tonnes of imports, 8m tonnes of exports and 6m tonnes of re-exports.

Sultan Bin Sulayem, DP World Group Chairman & CEO and Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, said the emirate’s external trade sector is capable of overcoming the strong headwinds facing global trade thanks to the depth, resilience, diversity and flexibility of the Dubai economy.

“External trade is one of the key pillars of our economy. We are today reaping the fruits of the vision of our country’s founding leaders and our strong strategic planning, backed by decades of hard work in creating a robust trading and logistics infrastructure. Dubai’s external trade sector has shown a high level of preparedness in dealing with the crisis. It has provided exceptional trading facilities and services to help businesses around the world overcome the challenges of the current period,” he said.

“During the pandemic, Dubai launched several stimulus packages under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to support the emirate’s business sector and reduce the impact of prevailing global economic conditions. The economy has efficiently navigated the turbulence in international markets by forging partnerships with markets less affected by the economic crisis. We are optimistic about the future and we will seek to constantly develop our trade business, especially by using new technologies to ensure optimum performance and provide quality trade services,” Bin Sulayem added.

Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, Director General of Dubai Customs said: “Despite the crisis, customs transactions processed by Dubai Customs surged 41% in H1 2020 to reach 7.2 million transactions. Dubai Customs continued to develop and launch new initiatives. These included Siyaj (Fence), the first integrated 24/7 control system in the world created to manage Dubai’s different ports, especially Creek Port and Hamriya Port. Dubai Customs also launched the Cross Border e-Commerce Platform to encourage e-commerce companies to set up their businesses in Dubai.

 The World Customs organisation (WCO) endorsed Dubai Customs’ initiative to launch an international platform for best practices and Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) mutual recognition agreements among AEO members. Dubai Customs will lead the way in facilitating the exchange of secure data between the WCO and member customs administrations. A total of 77 companies have registered as members of the AEO programme and around 4.4 million customs transactions were completed through the programme in H1 2020, Musabih explained.

Dubai Customs, in cooperation with the WCO and the UAE Federal Customs Authority, is currently preparing to host next year’s 5th WCO Global AEO conference. Dubai Customs played a vital role during the COVID-19 pandemic in facilitating and supporting the smooth and uninterrupted flow of goods through the global supply chain, in cooperation with its strategic partners. The organisation implemented the stimulus package launched by the emirate’s leadership to help businesses overcome the impact of the pandemic. Its partnership with government departments played a key part in facilitating the clearance of relief shipments sent to friendly countries to help them tackle the crisis.

Dubai’s external trade showed considerable growth in May and June compared to April 2020, a period in which widespread lockdowns were enforced across the globe to combat the pandemic. Dubai’s external trade grew in May compared to April by 17.2% to reach Dhs75 billion, and again grew 20% in June compared to May to reach Dhs90 billion.

The latest external trade figures for H1 2020 show strong integration between different modes of shipping: land, sea and air. Airborne trade accounted for Dhs250 billion, accounting for 45% of total trade. Sea trade reached Dhs212 billion (39%), while land trade touched Dhs89 billion (16%).

Direct trade totalled Dhs320b, representing 58% of Dubai’s external trade, while trade through free zones reached Dhs227b(41%), and customs warehouse trade weighed in at Dhs4b (1%).

China maintained its position as Dubai’s largest trading partner in H1 2020 with Dhs66.4 billion worth of trade. India came in second with Dhs38.5 billion, followed by the USA in third place with Dhs31.7 billion, and Switzerland with Dhs24.3 billion. Saudi Arabia continued to be Dubai’s largest Gulf and Arab trade partner and its fifth largest global trade partner with Dhs24.1 billion worth of trade.

Related articles