Jafza predicts 10% growth for Mid East logistics market
The Transport and Logistics Market in the Middle East is estimated to grow by more than 10%, reaching US$35 billion by the end of 2012, the Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza) predicted recently.
This growth prediction was part of the focus of senior Jafza officials at the recent Annual Logistics Strategic Customer Forum, organised by the Free Zone for key stakeholders involved in logistics and trade in Jafza to collaborate, ensuring the sector in Jafza makes the most of these opportunities.
This growth is largely driven by Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries that have been making substantial investments in infrastructure development and have achieved significant economic growth in the recent years; despite economic downturn that has impacted the global economy in a big way.
The GCC’s logistics market is estimated to reach $27 billion in 2012 with the UAE in lead having revenue of $9 billion. The market growth leaves huge opportunities for the logistics sector in Jafza to capitalise on.
Ibrahim Mohamed Al Janahi, Deputy CEO of Jafza, in his opening speech at the Forum, said: “The announcement made by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, for a new mega-development “Mohammed bin Rashid City”, the largest project in the history of the UAE, will further push growth prospects for Jafza based logistics companies.
“The logistics industry is one of Jafza and Dubai’s key economic sectors. Economic recovery and a surge in trade flow between Jafza and its key trade partners, the GCC, West Asia, Africa, India, China and the CIS, opens huge opportunities for growth for logistics sector in the Free Zone. Jafza Strategic Customer Forums focus on the exchange of ideas between industry leaders, Jafza Management and Jafza’s strategic partners, aiming to establish dialogue on how we can work together to grow. Open dialogue enables us to understand the changing needs and concerns of the industry and will enable us to better accommodate the growth of their businesses.”
This Customer Forum was the third annual forum of its kind for the logistics companies in Jafza. Senior officials from leading logistics companies like GAC, Agility, Aramex, Caterpillar, CEVA Logistics, Landmark Group, Steinweg – Sharaf FZCO, Mohebi Logistics, RHS Group, Jashanmal and Transworld among others attended the forum.
Attendees were given an update on the impressive growth in the sector, with more specific focus on the work that was being done to find solutions to issues raised by the industry leaders during last year’s forum.
Senior officials from Jafza and partners including Dubai Customs, DP World, Trakhees, Dubai Chamber, Dubai Trade, Dubai World Security and Imdaad addressed a range of customer queries during the morning’s discussion. The second part of the forum was dedicated to more specific discussions related to growth prospects and emerging markets. Speaking on the relationship between trade growth and growth in logistics Ibrahim Al Janahi said:
“The growth of the transport and the logistics industry is closely connected to the economic cycle. When the economic activity picks up, demand for transport and logistics services also picks up. This is the reason why recession affects the transport and logistics industry immediately. Decline in air cargo and sea cargo volumes in Europe, Americas and other recession affected regions reflect the state of economy in those trade routes. This also explains the development of new trade corridors to support Intra-Asian trade and other regions such as Africa and Latin America or in the case of Middle East between Jafza and other countries in the region.”
Jafza management reiterated their commitment to maintain a policy of continued dialogue to help its customers grow and succeed.