Saudi Arabia largest export and re-export market for Dubai Chamber members

Dubai: Dubai Chamber members’ exports and re-exports to Saudi Arabia during the first six months of the year reached a total value of AED 36.3 billion, or 27pc of the overall total, making the kingdom the largest export market for the members while Iraq was second, with exports and re-exports valued at AED 19.4 billion, revealed a recently-released Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry study.

According to the study, the other large markets for members’ exports and re-exports during the period were Qatar, destination of goods valued at AED 10.4 billion; Kuwait, AED 8.8 billion; Oman, AED 5.1 billion and India, AED 2.8 billion while trade between UAE’s local companies and Dubai’s free zones and duty free shops placed the UAE as a large export and re-export market, registering an export value of AED 6.9 billion.

The study further analysed that proximity and ease of movement of goods within the region had made the GCC countries the busiest export and re-export destinations for Dubai Chamber members. During the six-month period, 109,315 certificates of origin (COs) had been issued to export shipments destined to Saudi Arabia, equivalent to 30% of all COs issued during the half yearly period.

Still, COs covering export shipments of members to Qatar reached a total of 60,810 or 16% of the total number; to Kuwait, 35,146 COs or 9%; to Oman, 22,910 COs or 6%; to Bahrain, 17,629 COs or 5%; and to the UAE, 17,000 COs or 5% of the total certificates of origin issued during the six-month period.

Meanwhile, in terms of number of members exporting to a particular country, Qatar was ahead of Saudi Arabia. During the six-month period, 3,540 members exported to Qatar, or 38% of the 9,194 exporters during the period. The number of exporters to Saudi Arabia was 130 less at 3,410 or 37%.

The other GCC member countries made up the top six busiest destinations, with exporters to Kuwait numbering 2,344 or 25%; to Bahrain, 1,439 exporters or 16%; to Oman, 1,375 exporters or 15%; and to the UAE, 1,119 exporters or 12%. Non-GCC member countries with high number of exporters were Iraq, with 997 members exporting to the country; Jordan, with 992 exporters; and Egypt, with 963 exporters.

Hamad Buamim, Director General, Dubai Chamber, informed that the study indicates the pivotal role played by the trading sector led by the exports and re-exports of Dubai Chamber members which have shown an impressive growth in the first half of the year by making a record in the Chamber’s history of operations. This excellent performance is the result of the traders’ determination to explore new and emerging destinations to market their goods and expand their global outreach, he said.

Comparative figures on export values to the various destinations for the first six months of the last two years singled out the rapid expansion of Iraq, with exports and re-exports to the country increasing from only AED 4.1 billion from January to June of 2011 to a high of AED 19.4 billion for the same period in 2012. The difference in value of AED 15.3 billion was equivalent to a year-on-year growth of 376%.

Exports and re-exports to Saudi Arabia grew by AED 6.6 billion, making the country the 2nd largest gainers. However, in terms of growth, the rate was comparatively much lower at 22%. The 3rd largest gainer was Qatar, growing by AED 2.4 billion or 31%. Other GCC member countries that gained significantly were Kuwait and Oman, exports to each country increasing by AED 1.2 billion.

The reconstruction of Libya led to a surge in demand in the country. Exports and re-exports of Dubai Chamber members to Libya grew by AED 1.7 billion or by 260% on an annual basis. The short-lived political turmoil in Egypt in the early part of 2011 led to lower exports to the country during the period. Thus, the export value of AED 2.7 billion in the 1st half of 2012 translated to an increase of 40% to a value of AED 769 million.

Other destinations that grew significantly were Jordan, by AED 759 million or 43%; Turkey, by AED 663 million or 131%; and Pakistan, by AED 661 million or 53%.