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Mon 11 Aug 2008 09:35 AM

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Dubai gold trade up 48%

Global market turmoil boosts investor interest in precious metals during first half of year, up to $13bn.

Dubai’s gold trade increased 48 percent on the year in the first half to $13.07 billion, as global market turmoil boosted investor interest in precious metals, Dubai Multi Commodities Centre (DMCC) said on Monday.

“Given the current bullish sentiment of investors and gold's 'safe haven' status, the outlook for gold trade is promising in the remaining months of 2008," Ian MacDonald, executive director for Gold & Precious Metals, said.

"The sharp rise in prices seen earlier this year has been a prime driver in improving export volumes, and has boosted the role of gold as an inflation-hedging instrument.”

Gold price averaged $910 per ounce during the first half of 2008, up from $650 per ounce during the same period in 2007.

In the first six months of the year, a total of 265 tonnes of gold was imported into Dubai. Exports from Dubai reached 179 tonnes in the same period, an increase of 26 percent from 142 tonnes in 2007.

In the second quarter of 2008, Dubai imported 143 tonnes and exported 64 tonnes of gold. Gold trade grew by 26 percent to reach $6.01 billion from $4.764 billion in the same period in 2007.

MacDonald said that the region will witness more initiatives in a shift towards gold exchange traded funds (ETF).

Earlier this year, DMCC in association with the World Gold Council launched the Sharia-compliant gold shares, the first dollar-priced security of its kind, to be listed on the Dubai International Financial Exchange (DIFX).

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