Dubai’s foreign trade reached a record Dhs1.1 trillion ($299 billion) in 2011, up 22 per cent from the previous year, according to the customs authority.
Imports increased 21 per cent to Dhs442 billion, exports rose 44 per cent to Dhs98 billion, and re-export trade grew 18 per cent to Dhs161 billion, official news agency WAM reported.
Increasing competition in the local market, openness to international markets, growth in purchasing power, and improving services offered to importers led to the growth in trade, said Ahmed Butti Ahmed, the director general of Dubai Customs.
India was Dubai’s top trading partner, accounting for 19 per cent of the overall the foreign trade, amounting to Dhs206 billion. While the emirate’s imports from India were Dhs102 billion, exports to India amounted to Dhs36 billion and re-exports reached Dhs69 billion.
China was Dubai’s second largest trading partner, followed by the US, Japan and Germany.
Dubai’s direct trade with GCC countries grew 28 per cent last year to Dhs28.4 billion, compared to Dhs22.2 billion in 2010.