Dubai Airport Freezone (DAFZA) has once again been awarded the title of the top Middle East Free Zone of the future 2013/14 by the Foreign Direct Investment (fDi) Magazine biannual Ranking. This is the third time in sequence DAFZA to be named the fDi’s Middle East of the Future including the years 2011, 2012 and 2013.
DAFZA is recognized as a world leader in providing quality services and infrastructure to its tenants, attracting foreign investment to the region as well as strengthening its position as the fastest-growing business hub in the Middle East.
Commenting on DAFZA’s new title, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman, Dubai Airport Freezone Authority, said, “It brings me great pride to witness DAFZA attain the most prestigious award regionally, this reflects an increased foreign investment into the Freezone, which is consistent with Dubai’s strategy to excel as an international business hub.”
“DAFZA has proven its capability in attracting international companies through its 17-year history and unrivalled experience in dealing with multinational firms,” confirmed Sheikh Ahmed.
Dr. Mohammed Al Zarooni, Director General of DAFZA said, “Dubai Airport Freezone was ranked first in the fDi’s Global Free Zone Rankings in 2012 and we congratulated our tenants, stakeholders and employees. Our achievement this year comes as a result of forward planning, ongoing support and the encouragement of our leaders and strategic partners. As an organization, we invested lots of efforts and long hours into maintaining our position as the number one free zone, this award is a result of our efforts collectively.”
Luke Mcgreevy, MENA Publisher of fDi Magazine in Dubai said, “Free zones have played an important role in the development of the Middle East and, in particular, the UAE. The judging criteria for fDi Magazine’s rankings are designed to recognise which freezones have not only shown exceptional growth but also those which also offer the best services, facilities and incentives for tenants. Dafza has proven its capability in attracting international companies throughout it 17 year history. Figures for 2012 show that DAFZA is now home to 1,600 multinational companies, employing almost 14,000 people. DAFZA reported record annual growth of 73% in trade volumes in 2012, an increase of Dh69bn ($19Bn). Sales revenue also saw growth of 26% compared with 2011. These are key factors which contributed to fDi Magazine’s panel of judges selecting DAFZA as Middle East Freezone of the Future for 2013”
fDi Magazine is a specialist investment titles published by The Financial Times Group and it conducts this survey world-wide every two years. The rankings are considered the most prestigious free zone rankings around the globe and are based on several criteria such as outstanding performance year on year, growth and expansion plans and presence of high growth industries. The rankings have a particular focus on financial aspects and other such incentives including tax exemptions offered, transport services, infrastructure development and economic potential.
In 2012, DAFZA was named number one free zone in the World by fDi. DAFZA was also ranked first in the Middle East and North Africa in 2011, 2012 and 2013, and second in the world in a similar study conducted in 2010, affirming the good performance and the strength of Dubai’s economy and making it a world-class business destination, regionally as well as globally. Additional recognitions include The American Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award, the Quality and Distinctive Performance Award, the Comprehensive Quality in Client Satisfaction Award, worldwide ISO certificates for Quality, Environment, Health & Safety and Information Security Management System, Complaints Handling System, IT Service Management system and Energy Management System as well as the world’s premier business awards and the Stevie Awards.