Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 17 October 2019

Dubai's non-oil private sector economy strengthens in September

Firms are still optimistic about positive economic impact of the Expo 2020 on businesses

Business conditions in Dubai's non-oil private sector economy improved in September. Leslie Pableo / The National
Business conditions in Dubai's non-oil private sector economy improved in September. Leslie Pableo / The National

The non-oil private sector economy of Dubai expanded in September boosted by growth in sales activity in the emirate.

The seasonally adjusted IHS Markit Dubai Purchasing Managers' Index rose for the first time in four months during September to 52.6 from 51.7 in August. However, the latest figure was still among the lowest recorded over the past three years, signalling a relatively modest improvement in business conditions. A reading above 50 indicates economic expansion.

"The Dubai PMI remained relatively subdued in September, despite rising from the three-and-a-half year low in August. Activity growth did improve, but was still weak,” David Owen, an economist at IHS Markit, which complies the index, said.

“Most firms are still optimistic that price discounting will encourage greater sales in the future, while continuing to mention the positive impact that the Expo 2020 is likely to have on the local economy."

While sales increased at a solid pace overall, a number of panellists cited strong competition limiting orders from clients. New order growth in Dubai, the commercial and trading hub of the Middle East, softened over the course of September, the survey noted.

Output volumes increased at a slower rate than those seen earlier in the year. The pace of expansion was faster than in August, in part due to some firms boosting their marketing activity.

Slower growth of demand in the emirate also led firms to lower purchasing activity in the latest survey period, marking the first curtailing of input purchases since last October. Hiring activity, over the month increased, with latest data signalling a fractional rise in workforce numbers, according to the survey.

Updated: October 9, 2019 11:28 AM

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