The United Arab Emirates’ imports of rice totalled AED2.5 billion in 2014; a large proportion of which was re-exported to African countries at value of AED338 million.
Demand for rice in the UAE is projected to grow by 6.3 per cent a year in average in the coming few years, driven by rising population and higher income, according to a report by the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The report indicates that the UAE imports rice from India, Pakistan, Thailand and the United States, pointing out that the main markets for the UAE’s rice re-exports are Benin, Oman, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
UAE exporters have managed to reach and send exports to new growing rice-consuming markets in sub-Saharan Africa.
Most of the world’s rice production comes from Asian countries, with India, Pakistan, Thailand and Vietnam topping the list as the largest producers. Saudi Arabia, China, the United States and the UAE are among the world’s top importers and consumers of rice.
Noteworthy, Abu Dhabi Ports and Al Dahra Agriculture LLC, a leading international agribusiness company, have recently celebrated the breaking ground on their rice milling, storage and distribution plant’s silos at Khalifa Industrial Zone Abu Dhabi (Kizad).
This AED140m facility will produce up to 80,000 metric tonnes of rice per annum.