UAE's non-oil trade totalled $4.4tn in the past 10 years, minister says

The country is working on several initiatives to boost exports

DP World's Jebel Ali port terminal in Dubai. For the 2012-2021 period, the UAE’s total non-oil exports rose 12 per cent on an annual basis to Dh2.1tn, while imports rose 2.5 per cent yearly to Dh9.5tn Photo: DP World
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The UAE's non-oil trade totalled Dh16.14 trillion ($4.4tn) over the past 10 years as the Arab world’s second-largest economy accelerated its efforts to reduce its reliance on hydrocarbons, Thani Al Zeyoudi, Minister of State for Foreign Trade, has said.

The country's growth has returned to pre-pandemic levels, Mr Al Zeyoudi told state news agency Wam.

"We work according to the plans of the UAE’s leadership to double national exports, foreign trade and economic growth," he said.

The UAE is working on several initiatives to boost exports and partnerships with business leaders, ensure data transfer for easy access to local market information, draft strategies for the services sector and attract talent, Mr Al Zeyoudi added.

For the 2012-2021 period, the UAE’s total non-oil exports rose 12 per cent on an annual basis to Dh2.1tn, while imports rose 2.5 per cent yearly to Dh9.5tn.

Re-exports reached almost Dh4.5tn at an annual growth rate of 4.9 per cent.

The contribution of the UAE’s non-oil exports to the country's foreign trade surged from 12 per cent in 2012 to 19 per cent last year, according to the Wam report.

Last month, the government said its non-oil foreign trade jumped 27 per cent in 2021 to Dh1.9tn.

Non-oil foreign trade in 2021 was also 11 per cent higher than pre-Covid levels in 2019, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, said in a tweet on Sunday.

The UAE has been following a proactive trade policy to revitalise post-pandemic growth.

Last month, the UAE and India, Asia’s second-largest economy, signed a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement that is expected to boost non-oil trade between the two countries to $100 billion in five years, from $60bn currently. It is also in talks for similar agreements with South Korea and Indonesia.

The UAE also signed five agreements with Hungary in February for economic co-operation on space research and activities, commerce and industry, education, water management and boosting mutual investments.

China ranked as the UAE's top trading partner in 2021, accounting for 11.7 per cent of the Emirates' total foreign trade. The value of non-oil trade exchange between the two countries surged 27 per cent to Dh212bn.

India ranked second, accounting for 8.7 per cent of the country's total non-oil trade, followed by Saudi Arabia.

Updated: March 03, 2022, 3:29 PM
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