Dubai’s trade performance has shown steady and sustainable growth over the last five years, with non-oil trade volumes in metric tons registering a compound growth rate of 6.1 percent, according to figures from Dubai Customs.
Despite a challenging macroeconomic environment which impacted global trade, Dubai's trade volumes grew a healthy 8.2 percent in 2016, compared to the previous year, reflecting the resilience of the Emirate’s economy, and reinforcing its reputation as a global trading hub.
Despite the increase in volumes, currency fluctuations impacted the dirham value of Dubai’s trade, reporting a decline of 4.1 percent between 2014-2016 from Dh1.331 trillion to Dh1.276 trillion. However, in Euros the figures grew 15 percent from 273 billion euros in 2014 to 314 billion euros in 2016. The same trend occurred in Sterling with trade values increasing from 220 billion pounds in 2014 to 257 billion pounds in 2016, up 16.8 percent.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, DP World Group Chairman and CEO and Chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, said: “Although we have witnessed periods of economic volatility, Dubai’s trade patterns continue to display strong resilience.
Dubai’s flexibility and ability to adapt to change and world class infrastructure are paying dividends. The decision to diversify was taken over 30 years ago and is bearing fruit, focusing efforts on sustainable and accelerated growth. It has helped shift our reliance from hydrocarbons to a wider variety of sectors able to support the economy long term.”
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently announced a positive outlook for Dubai’s prospects in 2017 predicting 3.6 percent growth, ahead of the 3.1 percent growth forecast announced by Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Economic Development Committee earlier this year.