By Andy Sambidge
Dubai Chamber members see trade reaching more than $49bn for first eight months of year
Exports and re-exports of Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry members reached AED181bn ($49.2bn) for the first eight months of 2012, smashing the previous record set in 2008, it was announced on Saturday.
The performance was "extremely promising" and showed that the emirate's trade sector was leading economic growth, a senior official said.
It was achieved despite a relative slowdown in exports during August due to the impact of the holy month of Ramadan. Exports were down 16 percent month-on-month in August.
The figures, based on the declared value of shipments in certificates of origin issued to a total of 9,929 members between January and August, showed an increase of 12 percent year-on-year.
Hamad Buamim, director general, Dubai Chamber, said: "These figures are extremely promising and show that Dubai's trade sector is continuing to lead economic growth."
Exports to Saudi Arabia during the first eight months of the year reached a total value of AED48.1bn, or 27 percent of the overall total, making the kingdom the largest export market of members.
The level of exports to Qatar, Kuwait and Oman, and the trade between Dubai's domestic market and the free zones and duty-free shops, made the four GCC countries the next largest markets.
Egypt, India and Jordan were also prominent trade partners during the period, the figures showed.
Certificates of origin issued for export shipments to Saudi Arabia totalled 145,810, which was equivalent to 29 percent of the total during January to August.
However Qatar upstaged Saudi Arabia in terms of the number of Dubai Chamber members exporting to the country.
During the eight-month period, 3,865 members exported to the country compared to 3,782.