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Jebel Ali port and Free Zone play key role in Dubai and UAE’s economic growth

As the UAE economy grows, global trade enabler DP World is playing a key role in its development, according to a new study by the Boston Consultancy Group (BCG) “Economic Impact Assessment of Jebel Ali Port and Jebel Ali Free Zone on the Economies of Dubai and the UAE”. The results of the study were presented during a press conference held at the Dubai Press Club on Sunday.

In 2017, Jebel Ali Port and Free Zone contributed:

– AED 137 billion or 33.4 per cent to Dubai’s GDP of AED 411 billion
– AED 151 billion or 10.7 per cent to the UAE’s GDP of AED 1,412 billion
– Jafza accounts for 70 per cent of value and 97 per cent of all trade volume generated by Dubai’s free zones
– Jebel Ali Port alone contributes 26.1 per cent and Jafza 23.8 per cent to Dubai GDP
– Both provide 14.9 per cent of the UAE’s national non-oil GDP

Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, DP World Group Chairman and CEO said: “Trade has always been an engine for Dubai’s growth and we have played a central role in supporting it. The activities of Jebel Ali Port and Jebel Ali Free Zone are very closely connected with companies located there to take advantage of free zone facilities alongside to connect to global markets.”

Bin Sulayem added: “Our flagship is an example to the world and a model we are rolling out across other locations across our network covering 40 countries. Ports, economic zones and logistics working together supported by smart trade technologies are a way to drive economies forward for the benefit of nations and their people, both now and for future generations. As wealth generators, they are critical infrastructure assets that underpin prosperity and success,”

Identifying the value created by the port and the free zone, the BCG study underlines how they extend beyond their impact on GDP. It identifies three key areas – employment, diversification and productivity that reflect Gross Value Added (GVA) to the economy.

The two also account for 450,000 jobs in Dubai’s economy, 16.2 per cent of its total employment of 2.8 million people. For the UAE, this amounts to 476,000 jobs in the economy, 7.5 per cent of the total employment of 6.4 million people.

Other findings show that Jebel Ali Port contributed AED 552 billion, around 42 per cent of the total value of trade in and out of Dubai and that it contributes 47 per cent of imports and 64 per cent of exports.

Dubai’s economic free zones together generated AED 434 billion in trade value in 2017, with Jafza accounting for 70 per cent in terms of value and 97 per cent of the volume. The inflow of FDI to Jafza-based companies added up to AED 3.2 billion, 23.9 per cent of total inflow into Dubai in 2017and AED 3.1 billion of the UAE’s FDI inflow of AED 33 billion in 2016.

Jafza is home to more than 7,500 businesses from over 100 countries, supporting over 135,000 jobs on site and attracting more than 20 per cent of Dubai’s foreign direct investment.
Source: Government of Dubai

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