01 March 2020

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

Dubai exports surge 22pc in 2019 to $42bn

DUBAI’S external trade surged 6 percent to Dh1.371 trillion ($373.26 billion) in 2019 from Dh1.299 trillion in 2018 with exports skyrocketing 22 percent to Dh155 billion ($42.2 billion).

Re-exports grew by 4 percent to Dh420 billion and imports rose by 3 percent to Dh796 billion, said a Wam news agency report.

Non-oil external trade last year grew 19 percent in volume from 91 million tons in 2018 to reach 109 million tons in 2019. Re-exports rose by a record 48 percent to reach 17 million tons, while exports rose by 45 percent to 19 million tons and imports grew by 9 percent to 72 million tons.

These figures capped a prosperous decade for Dubai from 2010-2020, during which external trade grew by 70 percent.

Dubai’s strong foreign trade performance, which reflects its robust economic fundamentals and its resilience against odds, gave it a positive start to the year 2020 – the year of preparation for the next 50 years.Dubai achieved exceptional external trade growth in 2019 despite the headwinds from an intensified global economic downturn.


Bahrain’s value of imports down 11pc in 2019

BAHRAIN’S value of imports decreased by 11 per cent, reaching BD4.984 billion ($13.22 billion) during 2019, compared to BD5.594 billion ($14.841 billion) for the previous year, said data from Information & eGovernment Authority (iGA).

The top 10 countries accounted for 68 per cent of the value of imports, with the remaining countries accounting for just 32 per cent, said the foreign trade report by iGA for the year 2019, encompassing data on the balance of trade, imports, exports (national origin), and re-exports.

According to the report, China ranked first when it came to imports to Bahrain, with a total of BD777 million ($2.061 billion), Australia was second with BD352 million ($933.8 million), and the UAE was third with BD349 million ($925.9 million).

Non-agglomerated iron ores and concentrates emerged as the top product imported into Bahrain with a total value of BD380 million ($1.008 billion), while aluminium oxide was second with BD340 million ($902.06 million), and four-wheel drive cars third with BD206 million ($546.5 million).

The value of exports of national origin increased by 0.52 per cent to BD2.298 billion ($6.09 billion) during 2019, compared to BD2.286 billion ($6.07 billion) for the previous year. The top 10 countries in terms of the value of exports of national origin purchased from Bahrain accounted for 77 per cent of the total value, with the remaining countries accounting for 23 per cent.

Saudi Arabia ranked first among countries receiving Bahraini exports of national origin, importing BD534 million ($1.416 billion) from Bahrain. Meanwhile, the US was second with BD284 million ($753.48 million) and UAE third with BD272 million ($721.64 million).


Saudi building materials’ H1 exports surge

THE construction materials industry has ranked second among Saudi Arabia’s non-oil exporting sectors for the first half, with the total exports surging to over SR10 billion ($2.7 billion),  according to a report by Saudi Export Development Authority.

The report comes ahead of Saudi Build 2020, a premier trade exhibition for building materials, which kicks off on October 5 and runs for the next three days.

Last year’s event was attended by more than 23,000 people, and was a huge success. A total of 520 major international and local brands from 34 countries took part, said the organisers.

Mohammed Al Alsheikh, head of marketing & corporate communications at REC, attributed the growth of the construction market in the kingdom and the Arab region to the increased spending on infrastructure projects.

“The building materials sector is one of the main pillars of the construction industry in the region,” stated Al Alsheikh.

He pointed out that this reflected the economic movement of the sector, and therefore, the level of the volume of investment in the sector serves as an indicator of the economic and real estate growth.


UAE-Senegal trade totals $2.48bn in 5 years

THE commercial and economic ties between the UAE and Senegal have witnessed recent significant developments, with the value of their trade from 2014 to 2018 amounting to Dh9.1 billion ($2.48 billion), a media report said.

The trade exchange between the two countries in 2014 totalled in value to around Dh1.656 billion, and this figure reached some Dh1.5 billion the following year, reported state news agency Wam, citing statistics from the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Authority (FCSA) and the Ministry of Economy.

In 2016, the value of their trade amounted to Dh1.4 billion, which increased to Dh2.29 billion in 2017, as per the FCSA’s statistics, which also highlighted a further increase to Dh2.3 billion in 2018. The official visit of Macky Sall, President of Senegal, to the UAE is expected to reinforce the commercial and economic ties between the two countries, as well as increase their future trade. The UAE and Senegal decided to boost their ties by forming the “Joint Emirati-Senegalese Committee,” which held several recent meetings that have helped reinforce the cooperation between their public and private sectors.

The statistics also show that re-exports from the UAE to Senegal amounted to around Dh4.9 billion, accounting for 53.8 percent of their total trade during the reporting period.

Imports totalled in value to around Dh2.9 billion or 31.8 percent of the total trade between the two countries while exports amounted to around Dh1.3 billion or 14.4 percent.


UAE aluminium trade tops $2bn in 3 months

THE UAE trade in aluminium amounted to around Dh8 billion ($2.17 billion) during the first three months of 2019, a media report said.

The Emirates’ trade in the metal hit a record of Dh6.5 billion during the reference period, a growth of 23 percent over the corresponding period in 2018, reported Emirates news agency Wam, citing statistics revealed by the Federal Competitiveness and Statistics Authority.

This accounts for 2 percent of the country’s total non-oil trade during the first quarter of 2019, which stood at Dh396 billion, corroborating the prestigious position enjoyed by the UAE across this industry.

The steady growth in this kind of trade corresponds to the rising demand on the metal locally and globally.

According to official statistics, the UAE’s exports of aluminium surged to circa Dh6.85 billion during Q1 last year, an increase of 28.5 percent from Dh5.332 billion in the comparable period of 2018.

Imports amounted to Dh981 million in the reference period against Dh993 million in the same period of 2018, while re-exports were down to Dh100 million from Dh166 million in 2018.

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