01 March 2017

Gulf Industry Magazine helps you catch up with the numbers behind economic and industrial developments in the region.


Dubai non-oil signals strongest growth

DUBAI’S non-oil private sector recorded the strongest improvement in business conditions in January for nearly two years with the travel and tourism remaining best performing category, followed closely by wholesale and retail and construction.

This was highlighted by the seasonally adjusted Emirates NBD Dubai Economy Tracker Index, produced by Markit, a world leader in critical information and analytics, is a composite indicator designed to give an accurate overview of operating conditions in the non-oil private sector economy registering 57.1 at the start of the year, up from 55.9 to signal the fastest rate of improvement in 23 months.

Furthermore, all the three key sub-sectors monitored by the survey recorded marked rates of expansion. The travel and tourism registered at 57.8 on the Index with wholesale and retail at 57.7 and construction scoring 55.4.

Khatija Haque, head of Mena Research at Emirates NBD, said: “The rise in the Dubai Economy Tracker index in January to its highest level in nearly two years was mainly due to faster expansion in output and new orders. While some of the improvement was attributed to new projects, price discounting is still playing a significant part in supporting demand.”

The key findings are: sharpest rise in output for almost two years; all three key sub-sectors see marked rise in activity; and firms continue to discount output prices despite further increase in input costs.


Global logistics market to reach $15 trillion

THE global logistics market is expected to reach $15.5 trillion in revenue by 2024, while investments in industrial and retail projects lead to a spur in the domestic logistics industry, according to a recent report by Al Masah Capital, a leader in investments and market analysis.

In terms of volume, the global transportation and logistics (T&L) industry is expected to reach 92.1 billion tonnes by 2024, said the report. The report also mentioned that the global third party logistics (3PL) market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 5 per cent by 2020.

Putting the spotlight on Middle East and North Africa‘s (Mena) strategic location, Al Masah reviewed Dubai’s favourable position for international T&L.

Dubai possesses well established and modern facilities including free trade zones and a local marine terminal operation considered one of the largest in the world. Most companies find that the region offers a range of benefits for their regional and international operations.

The rising exports and imports drove the supply chain and logistics market and the Middle East, led by the UAE, to become one of the most important hubs in the changing global trade lanes. Thus, overall, as Mena countries pursue political transformation and economic diversification, transportation and logistics investment is the cornerstone to its future growth.

Revealing interesting facts about the Mena region, the report cited that region has trade relations with almost every country/region across the globe. It exports hydrocarbons and hydrocarbon-related products that are in great demand, and meets a large part of its food requirement through imports.

Data from the WTO suggests that Mena engages in maximum merchandise trade with Asia (55 per cent of all exports and imports), followed by Europe (31 per cent), and North America (8 per cent). Others like the CIS and South/Central America account for the remaining 6 per cent share.


Oman industrial estates draw $15.5bn

OMAN’S industrial estates had attracted investment to the tune of RO6 billion ($15.5 billion) till the first half of 2016, the chief executive officer of Public Establishment for Industrial Estates (PEIE) was quoted in a report.

“The number of projects in various industrial estates has touched 1,688, of which 277 projects are under construction, and 349 projects have been allotted land,” Hilal bin Hamad Al Hasani was quoted in a report.

“It is expected that a large portion of these projects will initiate their operational processes in the near future.”

PEIE attracted investments of RO228 million in various industrial estates during the first half of 2016,he said, adding that by the end of the first half of 2016, it had provided more than 46,000 job opportunities, of which 17,000 were for locals.

The leased area in the various industrial estates pertaining to the PEIE had touched 33.2 million sq m during the first half of 2016, he noted.

“The PEIE’s tender regulations have been published in the official gazette in the beginning of this year. This will give PEIE the flexibility in providing services in its industrial estates in accordance with the best management practices,” Al Hasani said.

“A master plan has been prepared for the Sohar Industrial Estate, taking into account the current seven phases and the surrounding developments. The master plan covers both, basic infrastructure and social welfare, such as housing, recreational and commercial facilities which are required to support the industrial activities,” Al Hasani added.


MEA stationery market to hit $12bn by 2019

INTERNATIONAL suppliers of stationery and office supplies are turning to the Middle East and Africa (MEA) for future business growth, with the UAE presenting itself as the ideal gateway to access hard-to-reach markets, said industry experts. Analysts TechNavio forecast an annual market increase in the region of 15 per cent, while Conlumino, another analyst, estimate the MEA market for paper, stationery and office supplies, will be worth $12 billion by 2019. While some suppliers are now just testing the waters, others have been in the market for many years, said Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of an upcoming industry event Paperworld Middle East.


Mena edible oil demand on 5.3pc growth track

THE demand for edible oil across Mena is on track to record a 5.3 per cent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) by 2021, far outstripping the forecasted 3.8 per cent global average, according to Euromonitor International, the market research provider.

Euromonitor International also reported that soaring demand for olive oil, particularly in the UAE and Saudi Arabia, is the result of an influx of Arab and Southern European expatriates and an increase in the number of health-conscious consumers.

“Growing health awareness is enabling more oil brands to penetrate the market, a trend that is set to further extend consumer awareness and, therefore, build category sales,” stated the Euromonitor report.

Oils from vegetables, nuts and fish are also in high demand among increasingly health-conscious consumers, along with ‘low-impacting processing’ oils, in which nutrients are immune to heat – such as virgin olive oil, raw coconut oil and cold pressed walnut oil.

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