Business activity growth in the UAE’s non-oil private sector edged up in December as output rose strongly, a survey of companies showed on Tuesday.
The seasonally adjusted HSBC UAE Purchasing Managers’ Index, which measures the manufacturing and services sector, was 58.4 points last month against 58.3 in November. The 50-point mark separates growth from contraction in the survey of 400 firms.
Dubai is a business centre for the Arabian Gulf region, but the PMI data did not show any significant impact from the plunge of global oil prices over the past six months.
“We expect lower oil prices to weigh on the economy into 2015, but for now demand is holding up well. That new orders as well as output have remained strong is particularly encouraging,” said Simon Williams, chief economist for the Middle East at HSBC.
The measure of output growth climbed to 65.0 points in December from 62.8 in November, while new orders were at 65.4 points against 65.5. Employment growth slowed slightly but remained well into positive territory.
Input price inflation rose to 54.2 points from 52.3, while output price inflation dropped to 50.2 from 51.2.
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