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Imports in the UAE Drop 0.9 Percent

UAE : 07 October 2010

Re-exports slow down while non-oil exports climb 23.7 per cent

July’s imports into the UAE decreased due to weaker domestic demand.  Meanwhile, recovering key markets like India boosted the growth of non-oil exports.

The year-on-year data for imports showed a 0.9 per cent decrease, landing at Dh 39.5 billion ($10.8 billion) according to the UAE Federal Customs Authority’s preliminary figures.  The most current data available is in stark contrast to the 12.1 per cent increase in imports for June.

Non-crude exports climbed to Dh 6.6 billion, a 23.7 per cent increase, while re-export growth geared down 10.3 per cent.  These figures indicate stronger growth than the 19.7 per cent boost in June.

Chief economist at Dubai’s HSBC Bank Simon Williams stated that the positive growth in exports is no surprise due to increases in global trade and the expanding regional markets within Dubai’s service area.

Williams noted that softer import figures may be a concern and indicate weakening domestic demand.

Analysts recently increased their forecasted figures for 2010 economic growth in the UAE, raising it to 2.4 per cent.

A survey of purchasing managers indicated even more positive numbers this week, pointing out that September’s business climate in the UAE private sector climbed to a 10-month record high.

The data for oil exports was not released by the UAE customs authorities.  The 2009 total exports consisted of about 41 per cent crude.

Income from oil exports in the emirate fell 11 per cent last year, totaling Dh 313 billion.  That was after the 2008 figures rose 39 per cent.  Opec agreements limited the crude pumped by the UAE in 2009, in an effort to offset the price fall of the year before.

Trade surplus in the UAE totaled $16 billion in 2009, as exports decreased by 15.8 per cent and imports were down 11.9 per cent from the year before due to the effects of the worldwide financial crisis.

The nation forecasts that trade surplus will see a 15 per cent rise in 2010.

Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News
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