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The UAE bilateral trade with Turkiye, Egypt and Israel is expected to gain further momentum in coming years following the opening of the new representative offices by Dubai International Chamber last week, experts say.
Analysts, diplomats and economic experts said the synergy between the UAE and Egypt, Israel, and Turkiye is compelling and the opening of the new representative offices will only stand to further strengthen economic ties and increase the flow of bilateral trade.
The emirate recorded more than Dh82.28 billion trade with the three nations last year and it is expecting that trade with these nations will hit Dh100 billion mark in coming years following exchange of delegations and opening up of new economic sectors in the wake of the comprehensive economic partnership agreements with key trading partners including Israel and Turkiye.
Dubai Global initiative
The launch of the new offices in Cairo, Tel Aviv, and Istanbul, respectively, expands the chamber’s global network to 15 representation offices around the world. It is in line with the the ‘Dubai Global’ initiative launched by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council to establish 50 representative offices for Dubai in five continents by 2030.
The chamber’s initiative will also support efforts to boost Dubai’s non-oil foreign trade from Dh1.4 trillion to Dh2 trillion by 2026, as part of the emirate’s five-year foreign trade plan. The chamber already has representative offices across Africa, Latin America, Eurasia, India, and China.
“I am pleased to say that the three office openings have been a tremendous success. We will hit the ground running, engaging businesses as well as public and private sector stakeholders within these markets to enhance economic cooperation, increase trade and drive investment activities,” Hassan Al Hashemi, vice-president of International Relations at Dubai Chambers.
Dubai International Chamber, one of the three chambers operating under Dubai Chambers, has inaugurated new international offices in Egypt, Israel and Türkiye, last week to maximise business opportunities in priority markets globally.
“We look forward to co-organising networking events and seminars for businesses as well as carry out business matching with partners in these respective countries,” Al Hashemi said.
Reaching right partners
Atik Munshi, managing partner, FinExpertiza UAE, said one of the primary role of the Chamber of Commerce is to promote and facilitate the businesses. Dubai Chamber has always been very proactive in this regards.
“Turkiye and Egypt are significant trade partners for Dubai and UAE and Israel has new accords with UAE. With offices in these 3 countries, Dubai Chamber ensures that Dubai is projected as a right partner for business and necessary information and documents can be made easily available to potential business partners in these countries. This would obviously help Cepa as well. This is one more step to attract FDI to Dubai and UAE,” Munshi told Khaleej Times on Sunday.
Saad Maniar, senior partner at Crowe, welcomed the chamber’s initiative and said it will help diversify the economy and boost bilateral trade with key trading partners.
“It is a great effort towards diversification of revenue stream and strengthening of the bond with strategic countries and it should contribute towards stability and security of the region,” Maniar told Khaleej Times on Sunday.
Furthermore, such initiative broadens the horizons for the business community for the expansion of their business, he said.
“Now that the base is set and infrastructure is ready, the focus should be on increasing the size of the population to enable the growth. Such are the initiative of the forward-looking nation, and we are proud to be part of this progressive country,” he said.
The UAE has maintained a positive trade balance with Egypt, with total non-oil trade reaching Dh27.52 billion ($7.5 billion) in 2021. Egypt’s ranking on Dubai’s trading partners list jumped from 25th in 2011 to 20th in 2021, while coming second on Dubai’s list of top trading partners in Africa in 2021.
Mariam Khalifa Al Kaabi, UAE Ambassador to Egypt, said the UAE believes that the future of regional security depends on strong multilateral partnerships and a shared commitment to achieving stability and prosperity through peaceful political and economic means.
“The comprehensive economic partnership agreements will continue to pave the way for more opportunities for the people of the region and open the door to the vital economic development of the Middle East, accelerating and enhancing countries' trade and increasing the ease of doing business across the region, and in other markets such as Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America,” Al Kaabi said.
UAE-Turkiye economic ties
The volume of non-oil trade between the UAE and Turkey has reached about Dh50.4 billion ($13.73) billion in 2021, growing by 54 per cent as compared to 2020, which had witnessed an increase of 86 per cent against 2019. The country’s ranking on Dubai’s trading partners list jumped from 20th in 2011 to 7th in 2021.
Saeed Thani Hareb Al Dhaheri, UAE Ambassador to Turkiye, said the strategic location of the UAE and Türkiye between Asia and Europe serves both East and West and provides optimal commercial conditions for the two countries to facilitate trade.
“The comprehensive development witnessed by the two cities (Dubai-Istanbul) and the high competitiveness made both sides an important economic and commercial center and a key destination for global and regional companies,” he said.
Fatma Nilgun Emrem, chairperson of the Turkish Business Council in Dubai, said the opening of Dubai International Chamber in Turkiye will have definitely a very positive impact for all the Turkish investors, entrepreneurs and will be well received.
“It is a token of commitment to achieve the targeted growth in bilateral trade. The real sector will have the comfort of availing firsthand and reliable information as well as direct contact with the relevant officials, which will accelerate the entry for investors into the UAE market with confidence,” she said.
Bilateral trade between the UAE and Israel reached Dh4.36 billion ($1.19 billion) in 2021 and Israel’s ranking on Dubai’s trading partners list jumped from 110 in 2020 to 58 in 2021.
The chamber’s new office in Tel Aviv will enable Israeli companies to maximise Dubai’s business hub opportunities and access MENASA markets as well as empower Dubai investors to explore business possibilities across Israel.
“Dubai International Chamber’s new representative office reinforces strong business links between Israel and the UAE paving the way for bi-lateral trade to reach $10 billion within five years,” according to an analyst.
Dubai Chambers is the engine of economic advancement for the emirate and is committed to attracting foreign investments and international companies to the emirate as well as supporting its member companies with global expansion. The chambers will continue to launch new initiatives to engage with businesses and cement Dubai’s position as a global business hub.
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