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Infographic: DAFZA’s foreign trade reaches AED 146 billion in 2018

The DAFZA's exceptional performance in 2018 is reflected in its increased budget for 2019, and an increase in investments.

DAFZA contributes 11% to Dubai’s foreign trade DAFZA reports total revenue growth of 8% Net profit has increased by 5% whilst EBID has increased by 4%

The Dubai Airport Freezone Authority (DAFZA) has announced that its 2019 budget has increased significantly to AED 1 billion ($272.2 million). This increase is a reflection of DAFZA unwavering commitment to continuously increase its contribution to Dubai trade.

DAFZA’s investment in new expansion projects is estimated to be around AED 780 million ($212.3 million) representing 78% which comes in support to its commitment to increasing its contribution to Dubai trade. 

DAFZA's foreign trade in 2018 grew AED 55.8 billion ($15.2 billion) to reach AED146 billion ($39.7 billion) representing an increase of 62% versus 2017, while its contribution to Dubai's foreign trade in 2018 reached 11% versus 7% in 2017. 

DAFZA has shown resilience and steady growth with 2018 results reaching unprecedented performance with 5% growth in net profit, a 4% increase in EBID, an 8% increase in total revenue, as well as an increase of 3% in total assets versus 2017. Following the free zone's decision in mid-2018 to reduce its set up costs by 65%, the zone witnessed a clear 22% increase in registered companies versus last year.

Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Airport Freezone Authority, said that trade is one of the key sectors driving Dubai’s growth, supported by the Emirate’s long standing of being a gateway for global trade. DAFZA’s results achieved in 2018 are a direct reflection of Dubai’s strong economic growth and in line with the path taken by Dubai’s leadership for revenue diversification. 

Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum added that the results confirm DAFZA continues to play a vital role in achieving the strategic goals of strengthening Dubai's economy, with foreign direct investment through attracting global capital and major multinational organizations. This also encourages investors to establish their business within a stable economic environment and to expand their investments operating locally in the UAE and regionally through DAFZA. The zone’s unique value proposition encourages investors to set up their businesses in DAFZA where they benefit from the competitive environment on offer and the high flexibility in the midst of global economic fluctuations.

Sheikh Ahmed said that these carefully-laid plans and ambitious strategic initiatives support the strategy of economic diversification in line with the Dubai 2021 Plan. The government’s plans to move to the post-oil era have played a major role in achieving these results, as well as the continuous efforts of all those who develop and implement these initiatives. 

For his part, Dr. Mohammed Al Zarooni, Director General of DAFZA, said DAFZA’s foreign trade growth in 2018 is a clear indication that we are adopting the right strategies. DAFZA’s competitiveness has appealed to a wide spectrum of companies from around the world which seek to take advantage of Dubai’s position as regional and international trading hub.

He also highlighted the importance of strategic targeted marketing campaigns implemented during the past year, which has proven DAFZA’s ability to attract businesses, retain them and act as a catalyst for their growth. 

Dr. Al Zarooni pointed out that during the past year, DAFZA has sought to strengthen its presence among private sector companies regionally and globally by developing major initiatives and joint projects between the private and government sectors. This is in line with the governmental objectives set for stimulating the growth of the private sector and multinationals in general, as well as small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) In particular. The increase in the number of these companies that have made the free zone their home showcases the success of these initiatives.