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Dubai’s food trade jumps to Dh46b in first 9 months of 2013

Dubai: Rising demand and economic development in Dubai has helped the local food trade to strike a healthy balance between imports, exports and re-exports in addition to successfully targeting new export markets, shows the latest data compiled by Dubai Exports, the export promotion agency of the Department of Economic Development (DED).

Dubai’s total foreign trade in food products during the first nine months of 2013 rose to Dh46 billion from Dh43 billion for the same period in 2012, with imports increasing to Dh31 billion to Dh32 billion. While exports and re-exports also rose from Dh12 billion to Dh14 million between the corresponding periods, the value of exports aided by Dubai Exports saw a 114 per cent rise from Dh605 million to Dh1.3 billion.

“Our efforts in evaluating opportunities and focusing on core markets have seen four new exporters in Dubai penetrating Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Brazil and India this year. The Dubai Exports offices in Saudi Arabia and India have been instrumental in connecting Dubai trade to the respective markets and 82 per cent of the new export deals concluded last year were with Saudi Arabia,” said Engineer Saad Al Awadi, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Exports.

Dubai Exports was also able to help a number of intermediate exporters from the foods sector to successfully target countries such as Qatar, India, Libya, Uganda, Mozambique, Tanzania and Yemen. Estimated total transaction value of these intermediate exporters during 2013 was Dh155 million with Yemen alone accounting for 40 per cent of the total.

Asia-Pacific, Middle East, Africa and Western Europe are the major importers of food products from Dubai, according to the Dubai Exports study. The report also points to rising opportunities across various markets for exporters in Dubai. For example, Dubai is favourably placed to meet the growing demand for dried foods in Asia-Pacific and for pasta in Western Europe, and both the regions are witnessing strong demand for vegetable oil and chilled processed foods.