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Generally, with so much success within the oil and gas, and tourism sectors for years, the UAE's industrial sector is often found lagging when it comes to its contribution towards the country's GDP. However, the country's strategic development plan is making a steady headway in diversifying its economy away from oil.
The UAE Minister of Economy, in a report, said that the industrial sector's contribution to GDP is expected to reach 25% by 2025. Its current contribution to GDP is approximately 10% to 11%, which is targeted to reach 20% by 2020.
The same report stated that with enough government support, industries such as glass, steel, petrochemicals and aluminum are said to be those that will drive the growth and significant establishment of the UAE's industrial sector. It added that both the information technology and food industries are revealed to have found a niche here.
The UAE food industry is seeing an impressive growth due to ever increasing global demand and a continued rise in domestic industrial output. According to Dubai Exports, the sector accounts for 10% of Dubai's industrial production, with food exports from Dubai growing approximately 4% from 2013 to 2014 from Dh9.3 billion to Dh9.7 billion.
Dubai has traditionally been a key re-export hub. The re-export sector has seen a 10% increase due to growing trade with China, Russia, GCC, CIS and African countries which witnessed a rise in population accompanied by a rise in middle-class numbers and high disposable incomes.
With an industrial base of over 600 manufacturing firms and a wide product range, Dubai's food trade industry is becoming a major supplier to these markets with a high degree of success.
Indeed, the unique business infrastructure offered in the UAE and the different business solutions available in the industrial zones located in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and other emirates have attracted local and foreign investments that help boost the industrial sector's performance.
• UAE's industrial sector on track to meet target of 25% by 2025
• Industrial areas help boost overall industrial sector performance
• The food industry is a top contributor to Dubai's industrial sector
Source: Nicholas Baker, Special to Properties
The writer is a freelancer