DAFZA sees 82% increase in revenues in H1 2012 results

Dubai freezone also records 90% increase in rental of warehouse space.
Free Zone, NEWS, Ports & Free Zones


Dubai Airport Freezone (DAFZA) has reported a growth rate of 82 per cent in the sales revenues for the first half of 2012, with 90 per cent increase in the rental of warehouse space, compared to the same period in 2011.

As well as the increase in new tenants, the results show that during the first half of the year, there was an increase of eight per cent in requests for additional space, when compared to same period in 2011. These requests were mostly made from European companies operating in the Freezone.

These encouraging results come amidst ascending concerns over the Euro crisis still being faced in euro zone states. This highlights Dubai’s ability to provide ongoing investment opportunities to all foreign investors and the Freezone’s role in providing high quality facilities to support and drive its tenants’ businesses forward in the region.

Dubai Airport Freezone saw some 105 new companies opening offices in the first six months of 2012, which boosts the Freezone’s contribution to the emirate’s GDP of more than 2.27 per cent.

Also during the first six months, European and American companies topped the list of new tenants at 37 per cent of the total; followed closely by Middle Eastern and Indian businesses, and then Asian countries. The American and European markets have been of significant focus for the Freezone over the past two years, and European companies now represent the biggest number of investors in DAFZA.

DAFZA’s Director General, Dr Mohammed Al Zarooni, said that these results show the excellent progress being made in DAFZA’s objective to attract and support foreign companies within the Freezone. He said: “The Freezone’s strategic location, next door to Dubai International Airport, has given it unique strength and made it a favorite place for foreign companies. The availability of many facilities, hassle-free procedures and investment opportunities has secured its place as a significant contributor to the country’s growth,” he explained.

“We have worked hard to continuously develop the investment climate by training our workforce to best serve clients and satisfy investors" he added. “After a successful 15 years, DAFZA has become one of the most experienced authorities in attracting foreign capital. It contributed to six per cent of Dubai's export, around Dh 52 billion.”

Dr Zarooni explained that the Freezone companies, currently standing at more than 1,600 from around the world, cover with a diverse spectrum of industries that meet the needs of the Middle Eastern and African market. He believes this alignment will in turn lead to on-going business integration and boost economic relationships between the UAE and other countries worldwide.
New companies that opened in the Freezone in 2012 include the American ACE Hardware, Swiss’ Chopard, La prairie, Man & Hummel from Germany and Australian MLA. Now, more than 13,200 qualified personnel work within the companies operating in the Freezone, an increase of nine per cent over last year.

The growing achievements and significance of DAFZA has been further highlighted this year, through the recognition it has achieved from several renowned international awards. It was named number one free zone in the world by Foreign Direct Investment (fDi) magazine, as well as receiving accolades from the Stevie Awards in IT and Marketing, and The Global Award for Perfection, Quality & Ideal Performance from the Otherways Management & Consultancy Association.

The Freezone expects to have even further growth in 2012; Dr Zarooni said that the future is full of aspirations and positive expectations, with plans to implement a number expansion and improvement plans to be rolled out. These include increasing the rental spaces for offices, adding new services and facilities for clients, such as a business center, restaurants and a health club.
European and American companies represent 41% percentage of DAFZA tenants, with 650 companies followed by Gulf companies at 29 per cent or 464 companies. Asian companies represent 16 per cent, and Middle Eastern companies at six per cent.

The aviation industry has formed the largest industry present within DAFZA, at 14 per cent, followed by electronics with 12 per cent, engineering & construction materials at 12 per cent, and telecommunications 10 per cent.

In terms of licenses issued, the licenses for trade companies enjoyed the highest percentage of 67.6 per cent, the service sector represented 32 per cent of licenses, and very minor percentage goes to industrial sector.

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