Dubai posts robust trade activity as exports rise ahead of Expo 2020

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Expo 2020 Dubai is expected to be a catalyst for boosting trade activity and fostering cross-border economic cooperation.

The value of exports and re-exports of Dubai Chamber members increased 21.8% year-over-year to reach Dhs147.3 billion in the January-August 2021 period, supported by a rebound in trade activity in Dubai.

The Chamber pointed out that the exports and re-exports of its members recorded year-over-year growth of 43.9%, reaching Dhs21.4 billion in August 2021. A total of 58,154 certificates of origin were issued by Dubai Chamber in August 2021, up from 48,129 certificates in July 2021.

As a region, the GCC was the top export market for Dubai Chamber members between January and August 2021.

Chamber members’ exports and re-exports to the GCC countries during the January-August 2021 period recorded growth of 16.4% year-over-year to Dhs79.6 billion in the first eight months of 2021.

GCC markets accounted for 53% of the total exports and re-exports of members during the month. Members’ exports and re-exports to GCC countries reached Dhs11.4 billion in August 2021, jumping 37% compared to the previous month.

Chamber members’ exports and re-exports to the top 10 non-GCC markets recorded a growth rate of over 31% during the first eight months of 2021.

Hamad Buamim, President & CEO of Dubai Chamber, said the figures demonstrate the strength and resilience of Dubai’s trade sector, which is seeing increased momentum as Expo 2020 Dubai approaches.

He noted that Dubai Chamber is working closely with its partners in the public and private sector to support the five-year plan announced by HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to boost Dubai’s foreign trade from Dhs1.4 trillion to Dhs2 trillion.

He noted that Dubai Chamber’s representative offices around the world are play a crucial role in identifying export opportunities for Dubai Chamber members and the wider business community in Dubai, which enhance economic competitiveness and drive sustainable growth, adding that Expo 2020 Dubai is expected to be a catalyst for boosting trade activity and fostering cross-border economic cooperation.

Dubai’s food and beverage (F&B) trade, excluding tobacco, reached $13.9 billion during the 2015-2020 period, while the sector has been identified as a key factor expected to drive bilateral trade in the short-term, new Dubai Chamber analysis has revealed recently.

In 2020, the value of food and beverage trade (excluding tobacco) between Dubai and Africa amounted to $2.4 billion in food and beverage trade, marking a growth rate of 18 per cent compared to the previous year and the highest level since 2017.

Dubai’s food and beverage trade with Africa accounted for around 13% of the emirate’s total trade volume with the continent, over the same period, excluding trade in gold, jewellery and precious stones. Dubai’s exports in this category amounted to 31 percent of the trade volume, and re-exports represented 23 per cent.

The analysis was released in the lead up to the 6th Global Business Forum Africa, organised by Dubai Chamber in partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai. The study highlighted Dubai-Africa F&B bilateral trade trends by region, as well as the potential avenues for future cooperation.

In 2020, North Africa accounted for the largest share of Dubai-Africa F&B trade, reaching a value of $971.2 million, followed by East Africa ($828.3 million). Southern Africa ranked third among Dubai’s largest food and beverage trading partners, with a total value of $362.9 million.

Dubai Startup Hub, an initiative of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, recently launched the sixth cycle of the Dubai Smartpreneur Competition, which is open to start-ups offering innovative solutions in the categories of Sustainability, Opportunity and Trade.

A virtual launch ceremony, hosted by the chamber earlier today, was attended by Dubai Chamber officials, industry experts, and members of the local start-up community, as well as previous competition winners and contestants.

Open to all entrepreneurs in the UAE and abroad, the competition allows them to become a part of the Dubai Government’s strategy to elevate the city into a global platform for innovative start-ups.

It is also in line with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to transform the emirate into one of the world’s smartest cities. Start-ups must submit their entries through the Dubai Startup Hub website by 30th September, 2021. Over 2,000 smart business ideas were submitted over the last five cycles of the competition.

The launch ceremony featured an informative presentation outlining the criteria for submissions and the main benefits of participating, which include Dhs150,000 in cash prizes for the top three winners, a four-day bootcamp for the top 30 start-ups, access to investors and business partners, the top 10 candidates will have an opportunity to pitch live at Expo 2020 Dubai.