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Exports from Dubai’s DAFZA up 54% in Q1 2020

Exports from Dubai’s DAFZA up 54% in Q1 2020

China accounted for the highest percentage of DAFZA’s trade, with 21 per cent valued at Dhs7.7bn

DAFZA

The Dubai Airport Freezone Authority (DAFZA) said that its exports during the first quarter of the year climbed 54 per cent.

During Q1, China accounted for the highest percentage of DAFZA’s trade, with 21 per cent valued at Dhs7.7bn, followed by India with 16.6 per cent at Dhs6.1bn and Switzerland at 14 per cent valued at Dhs5.1bn.

The free zone also witnessed a large trade surplus totaling Dhs3.1bn, reported Dubai Media Office.

The machinery and electrical equipment industry ranked first in imports, with 8.4 per cent growth, at a value of Dhs9.9bn.

It was followed by pearls, semi-precious stones and metals, which accounted for 34.5 per cent of total imports valued at Dhs5.8bn. Both sectors represent 93 per cent of DAFZA’s total trade during the first quarter of the year.

DAFZA also recorded a growth in sales rates, with a year-on-year increase of 9 per cent.

“During the first half of the year, DAFZA achieved 92 percent of its sales targets and has played a critical role in stimulating economic activity in the country. Situated with direct access to one of the world’s busiest international airports, the free zones’ strategic location has enabled it to attract companies to the office complexes at DAFZA, which saw a 28 percent increase in rental rates,” said Mohammed Al Zarooni, Director General of DAFZA,

There was also an increase in the number of companies present within the freezone. It witnessed a 19 per cent increase in the number of registered companies compared to 2019, with the total leased area growing 2.10 per cent over the previous year.

The number of small and medium-sized companies recorded a remarkable growth of about 23 per cent compared to the results of last year. Meanwhile, there was a 39 per cent growth in the number of companies during the first half of the year compared to 2019.

“The free zone’s capability to control the impact of the current pandemic has led DAFZA to sustain growth and flow of foreign direct investment during the recession and economic recovery stage, which has led to mixed results around the world,” said Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of DAFZA.

On Tuesday, Dubai’s Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai said that FDI inflows into the emirate during H1 2020 amounted to an estimated Dhs12bn.

Read: Dubai attracted around Dhs12bn of FDI in H1 2020

In an effort to support companies during the Covid-19 pandemic, DAFZA launched a set of economic incentive packages in April to support companies operating out of the free zone and to ensure business continuity. The measures included postponing lease payments for up to three months and also exempting retailers operating within the freezone from lease payments for a period of up to three months.

Read: DAFZA announces incentives to support freezone companies

The free zone has implemented a 100 per cent remote work system within the authority’s buildings, and has urged companies to implement the same system too.

Dubai Airport Freezone was also granted the Safe Zone certification by the World Free Zones Organization, which certifies that the emirate’s free zone adopts the highest international standards in safety and security, implements tools to ensure clean trade flows, and actively combats illicit trade.

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