UAE non-oil trade hits AED 594 billion (US $162 billion) in 2012

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Gold jewellry on display at the Dubai Gold market
Gold, diamond, jewels and jewelry, cars and phones were the best ten selling goods in the UAE non-oil foreign trade in 2012, in form of imports, exports and re-exports. Photo-Joi Ito

The foreign non-oil trade of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) maintained its positive growth rates during the period from January to July 2012 compared to the same period in the last year.

The preliminary statistics of the Federal Customs Authority (FCA) showed higher foreign non-oil trade at 12% in January- July 2012. The total foreign trade climbed by Dhs62.8bn to Dhs593.8bn compared to Dhs531 billion during the same period in the last year.

The data of the UAE foreign non-oil trade reflected several positive indicators within the first seven months of 2012, the FCA said in a press release yesterday. These indicators include the ever-increasing growth rates of exports at 45%, with the total export increasing by Dhs19.7bn to Dhs94.7bn compared to Dhs65bn in the same period of the last year.

The imports soared by 12%, driving the UAE non-oil imports up from Dhs380bn to Dhs338.7bn in the comparative period with an increase of Dhs41.3bn. The re-exports slid by 6% to Dhs119.1bn for the same period.

The higher-than-ever growth rates in exports reflect good leadership efforts to improve the competitiveness of the national products in global markets, the FCA said. It also reflects how the national producers want to expand their presence in global markets in order to be in line with the UAE commercial and economic position in the world.

In terms of weight, the FCA said, the UAE total foreign trade hit about 71.4 million tons in the first seven months of 2012, including 32.5 million tons in imports, 32.8 million tons in exports and 6.2 million tons in re-exports.

The daily average weight of the consignments (exported, imported and re-exported) processed by different customs ports hit about 298 thousand tons per day (60 thousand tons per hour).

The FCA stressed that the increasing foreign trade in terms of weight reflects the efficiency of the ports in processing consignments from and to the UAE, as the local customs departments are keen to apply the best practice in customs procedures, inspection, examination and services as well as applying modern electronic systems in this regard.

“The UAE foreign trade with the outside world hit about Dhs95bn in July 2012 alone, including Dhs58.6bn in imports, Dhs17.7bn in exports and Dhs18.6bn in re-exports,” the FCA added.

The trade regional structure was stable in the same period, the FCA said. Asia, Australia and Pacific maintained its top place among the UAE most notable partners in non-oil foreign trade. The total trade of the UAE with this region reached Dhs253.5bn at 44% of the total trade.

Europe came second with Dhs160bn at 27% of the total, then the Middle East and North Africa with Dhs84.8bn (15%) and America and the Caribbean with 52 billion (9%). Western and Central Africa region came in the fifth place with Dhs17bn (2.9%) and finally the COMESA with Dhs15.6bn (2.7%).

The UAE non-oil foreign trade with the states of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) hit Dhs53bn, including Dhs21.8bn in imports, Dhs14.1 in exports and Dhs17.2bn in re-exports, the FCA said in the press release.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) maintained its top place among the UAE trade partners in the GCC in the comparison period, the FCA said. The UAE-KSA trade hit about Dhs17.7bn with 33.4% of the total trade with the GCC states. Oman came second with Dhs12.5bn (23.6%), then Kuwait with Dhs11.2bn (21.1%), Bahrain with Dhs6bn (11.4%) and finally Qatar with Dhs5.6bn (10.6%).

The UAE total foreign trade with the Arab countries hit about Dhs87bn in the first seven months of 2012, including Dhs40bn in imports, Dhs20bn in exports and Dhs27bn in re-exports.

The initial statistics showed that gold, diamond, jewels and jewelry, cars and phones are the best ten selling goods in the UAE non-oil foreign trade, in form of imports, exports and re-exports.

“Gold tops the imports in the comparison period with Dhs74.2bn, followed by Dhs23.5bn, then jewels and jewelry with Dhs22.2bn and cars with Dhs21.8bn and aerial vehicles with Dhs8.8bn”, the FCA said.

“Gold is also on the top of the exports in the comparison period with Dhs52.8bn, followed by polyethylene and polypropylene with Dhs4.3bn and jewels and pieces of jewelry with Dhs3.4bn and the crude aluminum with Dhs2.6bn and petroleum and other oils with Dhs1.9bn,” the FCA added.

Diamond, the FCA said, came at the top of re-exports in the comparison period with Dhs23.5bn, then jewels and pieces of jewelry with Dhs18.4bn, cars with Dhs9.8bn, phones with Dhs7.3bn and parts and accessories of locomotives with Dhs3bn and gold with Dhs2.3bn.

According to the FCA, the total trade in markets and free zones hit about Dhs9.7bn in the seven months, including Dhs4.7bn in imports, Dhs768m in exports and Dhs4.1bn in re-exports.

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