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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 September 2018

Dubai non-oil foreign trade up 2.7 per cent

IMF forecasts 4 per cent GDP growth for 2017

Dubai has earmarked about $36 billion on the development of Al Maktoum International Airport. Ali Haider / EPA
Dubai has earmarked about $36 billion on the development of Al Maktoum International Airport. Ali Haider / EPA

Dubai’s non-oil foreign trade grew 2.7 per cent in the first quarter of the year to Dh327 billion from the year earlier period, according to Dubai Customs.

“Dubai has proven once again its ability to overcome the challenges facing the global economy and world trade,” Shaikh Hamdan said.

“Despite the fluctuation in major currencies and slower economic growth around the world, we succeeded in coming to grips with the implications of those challenges and Dubai was able to increase its non-oil foreign trade, cementing its position as a regional and global business hub.”

Dubai has vied to cushion itself from global economy dips and energy dependency by diversifying economically and establishing itself as a logistics and travel hub. Dubai is home to Emirates, the largest long-haul airline, and has earmarked about $36 billion on the development of Al Maktoum International Airport, which in conjunction with Dubai International, already the busiest by international passengers, will serve more than 200 million passengers annually.

Dubai’s economy is set to expand by 4 percent this year from 2.7 per cent in 2016, above an average of 2.3 per cent for the Middle East and north Africa according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Despite the slump in oil prices, the oil economy of the UAE was forecast to rise on the back of an acceleration in global trade and spending on infrastructure ahead of Dubai’s hosting of Expo2020.

In May, the IMF said it expects a rebound by the country’s non-oil economy in 2017. Non-oil GDP is forecast to ­expand by 3.3 per cent this year with the budget deficit shrinking to 4.5 per cent of GDP, it said.

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