Dubai, Asharq Al-Awsat- Dubai’s non-oil trade accounted for 80 per cent of the UAE’s total non-oil trade in 2006, paving the way for it to become the preferred destination for commodities trading in the region said Dr. David Rutledge, CEO of Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC).
Speaking at the Middle East Trade and Export Finance Forum in Dubai today, (February 7, 2007), Dr. Rutledge said that Dubai is set to become the regional centre for commodities, backed by the UAE’s growing role in regional and global trade
“According to recent studies, the UAE is the largest importer in the Middle East accounting for 25 per cent of imports, and the second largest exporter, with 22 per cent of exports,” said Dr. Rutledge. “Given that the Middle East accounted for 5.3 per cent of exports and 3.1 per cent of imports worldwide in 2005, this clearly underlines the UAE’s significance on the world trade routes.”
Dr. Rutledge said: “The commodities industry in Dubai has seen growth in sectors such as cotton, sugar and vegetable oil. The tea trade has seen a major increase in the last year, despite reduced supply and higher prices. Gold trading grew by significant levels, while the diamond industry continues to boom at a momentous pace. The Middle East also accounts for four per cent of global steel consumption, most of which is routed through Dubai.”
He added: “The establishment of the DMCC, the first dedicated commodities centre in the time zone between Europe and the Far East, has enabled Dubai to enjoy a first-mover advantage and consolidate its position as the leading regional hub for the commodities trade. Members of the DMCC can avail of our industry-specific infrastructure and facilities to access the growing commodity markets of the region and beyond.”
The DMCC has capitalised on the various advantages offered by Dubai’s geographical position, its well-established infrastructure, transport and shipping facilities to establish a free zone that caters to the commodities trade.
Dr. Rutledge pointed out that Dubai’s seaport, currently the 9th busiest in terms of container traffic, was growing at a rate second only to Chinese ports. The emirate’s trade friendly infrastructure also ensured its position as the gateway to the growing consumer markets of the Middle East, North Africa and the Indian sub continent.