Revealed: the importance of fashion to the UAE's retail market

Dubai Chamber research shows the value of clothing sales in the UAE amounted to $12.3 billion in 2018
Revealed: the importance of fashion to the UAE's retail market
By Sam Bridge
Fri 23 Aug 2019 12:13 AM

The value of clothing sales in the UAE amounted to $12.3 billion in 2018, registering an annual growth rate of about 4.8 percent, according to new analysis released by Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The research also said the apparel retail sector is expected to see stronger performance over the 2019-2023 period.

The analysis, based on recent data from Euromonitor International, described the apparel market as a major segment and key contributor to the UAE’s retail sector.

It said global fashion brands still view the country as a preferred entry point for establishing their presence in the MENA region.

The analysis identified menswear as the top-performing category with the segment accounting for $6.2 billion worth of sales last year (53 percent), followed by womenswear with 34 percent and children’s apparel (7 percent).

It added that the outlook for UAE apparel sales is expected to improve over the next five years as economic conditions become more favourable and consumer confidence strengthens.

The research also said that online retail sales are witnessing strong growth, a trend expected to put pressure on prices.

Menswear is expected to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of about 3.8 percent between 2019 and 2023 to reach $7.8 billion in 2023 while womenswear is expected to see a CAGR of 4.9 percent in sales over the same period to reach $5.2 billion in 2023, largely driven by stable footfall and an increasing in spend on modest fashion.

Meanwhile, children’s apparel sales are projected to register a CAGR of 3.7 percent over the 2019-2023 period to reach $1 billion by 2023.

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