The emirate succeeds in avoiding the worst in light of the exceptional global circumstance of "Corona"

Dubai's foreign trade records 551 billion dirhams during the first half of 2020


Despite the extremely difficult economic repercussions left by the "Covid-19" pandemic and its profound effects on the entire global economy, including trade exchanges around the world, the Emirate of Dubai has succeeded in avoiding the worst in light of this exceptional global circumstance, and has achieved strong results for its foreign trade sector other than During the first half of 2020, as a result of decades-long efforts to apply the best international practices and standards, and to make huge investments in establishing a strong logistical and technical infrastructure of ports, airports, roads and free zones, all supported by logistical and customs services and facilities that are among the best in the world.

Foreign trade value

The foreign trade sector was able to significantly avoid the difficulties that the global economy is currently facing, as the value of Dubai's non-oil foreign trade in the first half of 2020 was about 551 billion dirhams, distributed into imports worth 320 billion dirhams, exports worth 77 billion dirhams, and re-exports worth 154 billion dirhams.

The amount of goods in Dubai's foreign trade during this period reached 44 million tons, distributed by 30 million tons "imports", eight million tons "exports", and six million tons "re-exports."

Diversify the economy

Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman and CEO of the Dubai Ports World Group and Chairman of the Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation, said that trade continues to be an important tributary of the diversification of the emirate's economic structure, while the foreign trade sector during the 'Covid-19' pandemic showed great flexibility and readiness. High in dealing with the crisis, and provided the best facilities and services for global trade, to help it pass this difficult stage with the least losses.

He added that the Dubai government has provided several packages of commercial and economic stimulus, in implementation of the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to set an example in dealing with crises with the aim of overcoming them and completing the comprehensive economic development process with great confidence and optimism for the future.

Advanced performance

Bin Sulayem added: “During the first half of this year, the period that witnessed the height of the current global crisis, the foreign trade sector demonstrated its ability to achieve an advanced level of performance, despite the existing challenges that most of the world’s economies are facing, due to its great flexibility in dealing with Global markets, and transferring its operations very quickly to the markets that are less affected by the economic crisis, to maintain a large volume and high value of trade exchange with the countries of the world, enabling it to start again and with great force once the repercussions of the global economic crisis recede.

He added: “We have benefited to the fullest extent from the work experience in light of the precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the (Covid-19) epidemic, and we have learned a lot from it in terms of the necessary development during the next phase, in the way of working and methods of performance, especially in the field of using modern technology and information technology applications. »Smart and artificial intelligence in the performance of our tasks with high efficiency».

Customs transactions

For his part, the Director General of Dubai Customs, Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, confirmed that foreign trade benefited from the implementation of economic stimulus packages and the development of customs services, and said: “Despite the current global economic crisis, the customs transactions completed by (Dubai Customs) have increased significantly. By 41% in the first half of 2020, to reach 7.2 million transactions.

Initiatives and projects

Musabih explained that the department has continued to develop new initiatives and projects, as a project (fence) has been launched to monitor customs ports in the Emirate of Dubai, especially “Dubai Creek” and the Hamriyah Port, and it has also launched a cross-border e-commerce platform to motivate e-commerce companies to establish distribution centers. Electronic her in Dubai.

He pointed to the launch of the Dubai Food Security Status Platform, which measures five important indicators of food security in real time: supply index, stock availability, local production, consumption, and prices of basic food commodities in the emirate.

Economic operator

Musabih added: “The Department has also established a global platform for the member states of the Authorized Economic Operator Program, approved by the World Customs Organization, to enable these countries to exchange information and mutual recognition agreements,” noting that the number of program members reached 77 companies, and the number of customs transactions through the program in First half of 2020 amounted to 4.4 million transactions.

A strategic role

Musabih affirmed that during the Covid-19 pandemic, Dubai Customs played an important strategic role in supporting the global supply chain, as it was keen on business continuity and providing its services around the clock with the best quality levels and the highest speed of completion, to enable merchants and companies to deliver their goods. To the local, regional and global markets without delay.

He pointed out that the department directly applied the economic stimulus packages launched by the leadership to enable dealers to overcome the pandemic, and facilitated the rapid clearance of relief shipments of essential materials sent to brotherly and friendly countries to confront the pandemic.

By air, sea and land

The means of transport used to deliver goods in Dubai's foreign trade varied, which were distributed to the air transported trade at a value of 250 billion dirhams, representing 45% of the total value of foreign trade, 212 billion dirhams, the value of seaborne trade, representing 39% of the total, and 89 billion dirhams of the value of trade transported by land. It represents 16% of the total.

Food and medicine

The amount of trade in foodstuffs during the first half of 2020 compared to the first half of 2019 witnessed a growth of 15%, to reach 9.1 million tons with a value of 32 billion dirhams, while trade in medicines and medical supplies achieved a growth rate of 19%, reaching 12.4 billion Dirhams.

China ... the number one trading partner

Dubai's foreign trade has maintained the diversification of its global and regional markets. China came in the center of the first trade partner of Dubai with trade worth 66.4 billion dirhams, followed by India in the second trade partner center with a value of 38.5 billion dirhams, then the United States with a value of 31.7 billion dirhams, and Switzerland with a value of 24.3 billion dirhams. , Followed by Saudi Arabia in the status of the first trade partner of Dubai in the Gulf and the Arab world, and the fifth trading partner in the world, with trade amounting to 24.1 billion dirhams.

Growth restored through May and June

Dubai's foreign trade witnessed a significant improvement in the months of May and June 2020 compared to April of 2020, during which the general closure measures were applied in most countries of the world to confront the "Covid-19" epidemic.

The value of Dubai's foreign trade increased in May 2020 compared to its value in April by 17.2%, to reach 75 billion dirhams, and the value of trade increased in June compared to its value in May 2020 by 20%, to reach 90 billion dirhams, which shows that the foreign trade sector enables Return to growth starting last May.

320 billion dirhams «direct trade»

Dubai’s foreign trade was distributed in the first half of 2020 to “direct trade” at a value of 320 billion dirhams, representing 58% of the total value of foreign trade, while the value of “free zone trade” amounted to 227 billion dirhams, representing 41% of the total, and the value of “customs warehouse trade” »Four billion dirhams, representing 1% of the total.

Gold, diamonds and jewelry

Gold, diamonds and jewelery came first among the goods in Dubai's foreign trade, as the value of trade in gold, diamonds and jewelry reached 140 billion dirhams, followed by land, mobile and smart phones with a value of 70 billion dirhams, then cars with a value of 25.6 billion dirhams, and petroleum oils with a value of 21 billion dirhams, while Computers registered a value of 19 billion dirhams.


E-commerce witnessed a significant expansion during the first half of 2020, as the number of parcels in e-commerce shipments increased by 150%, to reach 4.3 million packages, which shows the extent of Dubai's success in developing the digital infrastructure that qualifies it to enhance its global role in e-commerce.

The share of direct trade is 58% of total foreign trade.

"The foreign trade sector has shown flexibility and readiness to deal with the (Covid-19) pandemic, and has provided the best facilities for global trade to help it overcome the crisis."

Dubai Customs completed 7.2 million transactions in the first half of 2020, an increase of nearly 41% compared to the same period in 2019.


320 billion dirhams.


77 billion dirhams.


154 billion dirhams.

Cargo Quantity:

44 million tons

30 million tons of imports.

8 million tons of exports.

6 million tons


Direct trade:

320 billion dirhams.

Free zone trade: 227 billion dirhams.

Customs warehouse trade:

4 billion dirhams.

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