Dubai: UAE is the 15th biggest importer of food trade in 2012 at a value of $16 billion (Dh58.7 billion), according to the “International Trade Statistics 2013” report published by World Trade Organisation (WTO).
UAE’s imports of food represents 1.1 per cent of the world’s imports value as well as the annual percentage increase in imports of food into the UAE in 2012 recorded at 13 per cent, according to the report.
The European Union topped the list with import value of $531 billion, while USA came second at $117 billion, China third at $91 billion. These are followed by Mexico 8th, Saudi Arabia 10th, India 11th, Malaysia 12th and Egypt 14th.
According to WTO Secretariat estimates, 15 countries exported $1.12 trillion worth of food, holding 81.5 per cent share of the world’s exports in 2012. These countries in descending order are: European Union, USA, China, Canada, Argentina, Indonesia, Thailand, Australia, India, Malaysia, Russian Federation, Mexico, Vietnam and New Zealand. Lifestyle changes
Yousuf Jammal, UAE-based hospitality and the head of hospitality and retail in H Holding, said that the Gulf food industry has grown exponentially due to changes in lifestyle and higher inflow of expatriates in the Gulf.
He added: “This has underlined the critical importance for efficient food logistics through world class manpower and state of the art technology.”