By Andy Sambidge
China named as emirate's top trading partner while trade to EU rises 17% in first quarter of 2014
Dubai's foreign trade totalled AED323bn ($87.9bn) in the first quarter of 2014, with China named as the emirate's top trading partner.
Officials did not give the year-earlier figure for comparison but did say trade was experiencing "the same momentum it had in 2013" when it saw foreign trade of AED1.32 trillion, a rise of AED94bn on the previous year.
In Q1, AED201.4bn of trade were imports, AED26.5bn exports and AED94.4bn re-exports, a statement said.
It added that direct trade contributed 61 percent of Dubai's foreign trade, while free zones contributed 38 percent and the customs warehouses made up the remainder.
China topped the list of Dubai's trading partners in the first quarter of 2014, with a trading value of AED38.5bn, compared to AED30.3bn in the first quarter of 2013, up 27 percent.
China-Dubai trade constitutes 12 percent of the emirate's overall foreign trade, keeping pace with the salient boom in China's trade.
India came in second with eight percent of Dubai's total foreign trade, equivalent to AED26.3bn, followed by the US, Saudi Arabia and Switzerland.
Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, director of Dubai Customs, said: "The recorded foreign trade during the first quarter of 2014 portrays Dubai's capability of adapting to all changes within the international trade variables.
"Dubai has continued to maintain its capacity towards expansion and growth of the trade sector due to the current flexible commercial environment which boosts the position of Dubai as global and regional premier trading hub. Over the first quarter of 2014, the emirate has been a strong competitor with key world trade powers such as China, the European Union, the United Kingdom and Japan."
He said Dubai-EU trade soared by 17.3 percent with AED51.5bn of business during Q1, compared to AED43.5bn in the same period of 2013.
With Dubai transforming into the smartest city in the globe, telecommunication and information technology supplies took a focal place in major commodities traded through the emirate's borders in the first quarter of 2014.
Mobiles and telephone sets held the lead with a market share worth AED43bn.