By Elsa Baxter
Sales of sweets and chocolates in the region hit $6.6bn last year - Euromonitor Int'l.
Confectionery sales in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are set to increase by 16 percent by 2014, Euromonitor International predicts.
Last year, retail sales of sweets and chocolates totalled $6.6bn in the region last year – an increase of 10 percent on the previous 12 months.
Gayatri Bhasin, Euromonitor's research analyst for MENA, said the UAE’s confectionary market has grown 94.7 percent since 2004. This compares to 19.6 percent in the United States, 40.3 percent in China and 18.6 percent in the UK.
"The UAE was outpacing many of its global counterparts because it was less saturated than mature markets," Bahsin said.
The GCC is one of the fastest growing retail markets worldwide with turnover estimates exceeding $100bn, according to Business Monitor International (BMI).
“Regional economic and demographic growth, combined with high per capita retail spending and an increased appetite for high quality international foods make the Middle East an ideal investment target for domestic and international manufacturers and retailers,” Euromonitor said in a statement.