But its two biggest sectors continued to expand
Dubai economic growth eases slightly in 2017: official data
Dubai’s economic growth eased slightly in 2017, growing 2.8 per cent, although, its two largest segments, the wholesale and retail, and transportation and storage sectors, continued to expand, official data showed on Saturday.
Dubai’s GDP expanded to Dh389 billion in 2017 from Dh379bn in 2016, the emirate’s media office said. Dubai economy grew 2.85 per cent in 2016.
The retail sector, which accounts for 26.6 per cent of total GDP, grew 0.9 per cent, while the transportation and storage sector, which represents 11.8 per cent of GDP, expanded 4.5 per cent, the media office said.
“The growth in wholesale and retail trade activity was accompanied by growth in foreign trade. Total imports and re-exports grew by 2.2 per cent in 2017 compared to 2016,” said Arif Al Mehairi, executive director of the Dubai Statistics Centre. “These figures provide solid evidence for the fact that Dubai plays a dynamic role in supporting trade between the region and the rest of the world.”
Dubai, the second-largest contributor to the UAE's GDP and the main trade hub for the Middle East, is accelerating diversification efforts to boost growth, which languished in the past few years as regional expansion was hit by low oil prices.
Dubai’s economy, which fared relatively better than the other Arabian Gulf states during the oil price slump, is forecast to accelerate in 2019 and reach 3.7 per cent as infrastructure development and diversification policies continue apace, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid, Crown Prince of Dubai, said in December.
Real GDP is projected to grow 3.5 per cent in 2018.
Last week, the Government announced a series of initiatives aimed at propelling growth, lowering the cost of doing business and attracting foreign direct investment across a range of sectors from tourism to finance.
The financial services and insurance sector was the third-largest contributor to GDP, accounting for 10.4 of the GDP, but growth remained flat.
The vital real estate sector, which is the fourth-largest contributor to GDP representing 7.1 per cent of the total, grew 7.3 per cent.