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Sun 14 Dec 2008 12:36 AM

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Dubai Jan-Sept non-oil trade up 44.5%

Total trade including free zones reaches $192bn, with China, India, US top importers.

Dubai's non-oil foreign trade, including trade via free zones and customs warehouses, surged by 44.5 percent to 705 billion dirhams ($192 billion) during the first nine months of 2008, compared to the same period in 2007, the latest report by Dubai World showed.

According to the report, Dubai's direct foreign trade recorded a growth by 51.2 percent, with a corresponding rise of 33.4 percent in the trade activity through other channels such as free zones and customs warehouses, official news agency WAM reported on Sunday.

Saeed Al-Qaizi, Director of Procurement, Contracts and Statistics, Dubai World said: "Direct trade during the January-September rose from 304.4 billion dirhams in 2007 to 460.3 billion dirhams in 2008. Imports jumped 52 percent, rising from 215 billion dirhams to 326.6 billion dirhams. Re-exports registered a remarkable rise from 70 billion dirhams to 101.3 billion dirhams, while exports increased from 19.4 billion dirhams to 32.2 billion dirhams," he added.

"China topped the list of Dubai's main trading partners during the period in imports, occupying the first place with 40.5 billion dirhams. India came second with 37.2 billion dirhams followed by the US with 24.9 billion dirhams," Nassim Al-Mehairi, Acting Manager of Statistics Department, was quoted as saying.

 "India and Iran were the biggest re-export trading partners, accounting for 29.3 billion dirhams and 15.2 billion dirhams respectively. Iraq was in the third place with 6.4 billion dirhams. In exports also India came first, accounting for 13 billion dirhams. Switzerland was second with 2.2 billion dirhams and Egypt came third with 1.4 billion dirhams," she added.

Al-Mehairi noted that China topped the list of Dubai's trading partners in non-oil foreign trade through free zones and customs warehouses, with 28 billion dirhams, followed by India with 15 billion dirhams and the US with 12.5 billion dirhams.

"In exports through the free zones and customs warehouses, Iran topped the list with 13.7 billion dirhams, followed by India with 10.5 billion dirhams and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with 9.8 billion dirhams," she said.

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