x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Growth in regional trade will help UAE rebound, says minister

The UAE's economic rebound will be fuelled this year by the continued growth in regional and world trade, said Sultan al Mansouri, Minister of Trade

Stronger trade should help to sustain the UAE's economic rebound, the Minister of Economy says. Improving shipment volumes both in the country and globally were expected to bolster growth in the second half of this year, Sultan al Mansouri said yesterday. "Freight and cargo business is picking up and that should be part of the cycle in the next three to six months which is positive for trade," he said.

DP World provided some support for the optimism, with the global ports operator saying that gross volumes from its 49 operational terminals grew 15 per cent to 11.2 million twenty-foot equivalent units in the first quarter of this year compared to the same period last year. DP World said its first quarter volumes also exceeded 2008 levels, spearheaded by strong demand in the Asia Pacific and Australia, . Mr al Mansouri said increasing exports from the UAE was evidence that traders were preparing to rebuild stockpiles after clearing inventory levels that had been built up during the global financial crisis.

However, he said, "we need to rely not only on ourselves but on what's happening in other countries like China, India and the US, as it's all interconnected." The World Trade Organisation has forecast that the Far East and the subcontinent will lead the way as world trade expands by 9.5 per cent this year. tarnold@thenational.ae