Dafza revenues up 7pc on innovation
The Dubai Airport Freezone Authority, or Dafza, on Saturday announced a seven per cent increase in total revenues in 2015.
The Freezone grew its number of registered companies by 22 per cent, with multinational companies in particular rising nine per cent as reflected by the growth of new sales revenue by 18 per cent. The share of GCC and Middle Eastern companies in Dafza reached 40 per cent, followed by American and European companies at 36 per cent and Asian companies at 18 per cent. The share of companies from other parts of the world collectively reached six per cent. Reflecting the resurgence of Dubai's business environment, Dafza witnessed higher demand for its office packages due to various factors, such as sustained economic growth and eager anticipation over global prospects related to the upcoming 2020 Dubai World Expo. According to official 2015 statistics, leasable office spaces across the Freezone increased by 11 per cent over 2014.
Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, chairman of Dafza, said: "Dafza is taking steady steps towards positioning itself as a main player and major driver for economic development and trade growth in Dubai, posting a strong performance and achieving significant growth at the operational level and among the focal sectors in the freezone. Last year's buoyant financial results are testaments to Dafza's high potentials and competitive advantages which reflect its pivotal role in attracting foreign investments in the coming months." Shaikh Ahmed added: "Our successive achievements drive us to intensify our efforts to implement our ambitious initiatives that we launched in 2015, such as the Dafza Innovation Strategy. We are looking forward to support economic diversification policies which complement the ' UAE Beyond Oil Strategy.' We will focus on creating integrated solutions and innovative initiatives that contribute to the achievement of these ambitious objectives and national priorities. We aim to make a positive impact on smart transformation through investments in innovative ideas and projects' expansion in the Freezone."
Dr Mohammed Al Zarooni, director general of Dafza, added: "The past year was a successful journey for us... In 2016, innovation will be a strategic focus for us to accelerate our growth and support our efforts to explore the future in line with the wise vision of the UAE's leadership." During 2015, Dafza attracted a number of prominent international and multinational companies that showed interest in benefitting from the competitive advantages available at the freezone, especially its strategic location, tax exemptions, advanced infrastructure, investment incentives, and integrated portfolio of logistic services, sophisticated facilities and smart solutions. Dafza's customer satisfaction level rose to 77.6 per cent.
Electronics & Electrical emerged as Dafza's top sector by presence in 2015, accounting for 16 per cent of hosted companies. Consumer Products followed next at 11 per cent, with Engineering and Building Materials and Aerospace, Aviation and Related Services tied at third at nine per cent and Telecommunication, Food and Beverages and Logistics and Freight placing fourth at eight per cent.
Moreover, most licenses issued by Dafza were commercial licenses which represented 67 per cent cent of the total, while service licenses reached 32 per cent and industrial licenses 1 per cent compared to 2014.