Dubai hits the show circuit to turn food trade deficit

By Noel Ebdon

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags International trade United arab emirates

Dubai hits the show circuit to turn food trade deficit
The Emirate of Dubai has taken to the show circuit in an effort to narrow the gap between its food imports and exports, as nearly all of its annual food requirements are imported from overseas.

Tasked with reducing the deficit, Dubai Exports, the government’s agency for promoting the country’s locally produced products, has attended a number of food and beverage shows, pushing UAE products and manufacturing.


The agency recently returned from attending the 22nd​ WorldFood show in Moscow, Russia. The UAE has strong relations with Russia, with around US$1.5 billion of bilateral trade between the two countries.


"The foods sector in the UAE has acquired enormous capabilities in terms of quality and reliability, which can fetch exceptional results in the export market. Dubai Exports​ is focused on bringing such sectoral strengths of the local trade to the appropriate forums and markets, especially fast-growing markets like Russia with which the UAE maintains vibrant trade ties,"​ said engineer Saed Al Awadi, CEO of Dubai Exports.


The Moscow show covers most areas of the food industry, including frozen production, confectionery and bakery, preservation, oils, dairy, meat and poultry, and fish and seafood. With an emphasis on warehouse space, manufacturing and industrial free zones, these are areas the emirate is keen to expand as it aims to become the regional hub for food manufacturing, supply and packaging.


Last month the agency attended the Anuga show in Cologne, Germany. The show is one of the world’s largest food and beverage fairs for businesses targeting new markets and supply channels.


“The food and beverages sector in Dubai and the UAE as a whole are capable and confident of aiming for export markets far and wide. Anuga is the latest of a series of international platforms in which the local food trade has displayed its strengths recently with remarkable success,”​ said Awadi.


Dubai is putting increasing emphasis on manufacturing and the expanding facilities for exports and re-exports across the emirate, including the local food and beverage industry. Dubai Exports itself facilitated AED605 million worth of food exports in 2012, amounting to around 11% of the total export deals.

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