Amazon is to create 1,500 jobs in the UAE this year as part of plans to increase its storage capacity by 60 per cent.
The world’s biggest online retailer will also increase the area of its delivery stations by 70 per cent, it said on Monday.
Under its expansion plans, Amazon will open four new delivery stations in the UAE to boost last-mile capabilities. This will speed up deliveries and allow it to reach more customers, the company said.
By the end of this year, the Seattle-based company’s storage space in the UAE will be spread over more than 3.7 million cubic feet area – equivalent to nearly 40 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
“Our expansion is underpinned by our support of the UAE’s growing digital economy as we continue to invest in people, process and technology,” said Prashant Saran, Amazon’s director of operations for the Middle East and North Africa region.
“We offer an enriching environment where employees can learn and grow, all within a modern workplace that has an uncompromising focus on safety. Amazon’s investment reflects our long-term commitment to the communities in which we operate,” he added.
The value of the UAE’s retail e-commerce market, which rose by 53 per cent to a record $3.9 billion last year, is projected to reach $8bn by 2025, according to the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
E-commerce accounted for 8 per cent of the UAE’s overall retail market last year, the chamber said in June.
Growth was largely driven by the digital shift in consumer shopping habits amid the Covid-19 pandemic. It will be further supported by high incomes, high internet penetration, developed transport logistics, modern digital payment systems, tech-savvy youth and strong government support, according to the government body.
Amazon did not disclose the amount of investment that it will make in the UAE and the exact roles or departments where it will hire new staff.
Amazon’s current network across the UAE comprises two warehouses - known as fulfilment centres - eight delivery stations, three sorting centres and a network of delivery service partners.
The company’s latest expansion plan includes creating a “pipeline of new openings” and “closure of older buildings and upgrades, designed to deliver a better experience for customers”.
“We are scaling our operations to support the customer experience, getting people across the UAE what they want, when they want, wherever they are … as we accelerate our culture of innovation to better serve customers, we are excited to become an enabler of opportunity for talent in the UAE,” Mr Saran said.
Amazon experienced a sharp rise in its business globally because of the pandemic as more customers preferred to buy online. It led the company to expand its operations and hire a new workforce to meet increasing demand.
Last week, Amazon said it would create an additional 125,000 local employment opportunities throughout the US, on top of the 40,000 corporate and technology jobs it committed to earlier this month.