11 December 2011

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Steel, Metal and Building Material companies based in Jafza generated trade worth AED 12.26 billion in 2010 registering a growth of 14% last year in comparison to AED 10.75 billion in 2009. The figures reflect trade of construction and building materials including iron, steel, cement, plastering materials, stone and other similar goods.

Jafza officials announced these figures at the 7th Strategic Customer Forum held specifically for Free Zone customers in the Steel, Metal and Building Material Sectors.

Ibrahim Aljanahi, Jafza Deputy CEO and Chief Commercial Officer of EZW UAE region stated that he expected to see the sectors in the region grow in the next few years. He said: “The recent wave of GCC-wide infrastructure projects that have been announced by Governments in the region are expected to drive construction industry recovery.”

Mr. Aljanahi was referring to a recent report that states the GCC plans to invest a $3 trillion in an ambitious investment plan by 2020. The UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar account for almost 80 per cent of the on-going $452 billion worth of infrastructure projects that are expected to give a much needed boost to the GCC construction industry, according to a recent report by market research specialists Ventures Middle East.

Mr. Aljanahi added: “With its strategic proximity to the port and its unmatched facilities, Jafza is uniquely positioned to cater to the building materials industry and facilitate its growth. The industry was affected by the slump in 2008 but 2009 and 2010 saw an upturn and we are sure this momentum can be maintained. This Strategic Forum is a platform for us to exchange ideas with the industry’s movers and shakers and create genuine dialogue on how we can work together to sustain growth.”

Over the last ten years, Jafza has been playing a catalytic role in attracting and retaining FDI and has seen a 12-fold growth in the number of companies in the steel, metal and building materials sector that grew from 61 in 2000 to 730 in 2010.

Corporate business heads from leading construction and building materials companies including Conares Metal Supply, Doka Middle East, Essar Steel, Tata Steel, Qatar Steel, Al Nimr Steel and Danube Building Material who conduct their regional operations from Jafza currently, attended the event.

Senior officials from Jafza and partners including Dubai Customs, DP World, Civil Engineering Department (CED), Environment Health and Safety (EHS) Department, Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Dubai Trade and Dubai Municipality collectively addressed queries and suggestions to improve operations and free zone effectiveness.

The Strategic Customer Forum was the seventh in a series of industry events initiated by Jafza to encourage dialogue with key clients to facilitate growth in respective sectors. The first six forums were held for clients in the Logistics, Chemical/Oil & Gas, Automotive, Machinery & Equipment Manufacturing, Electronics and IT and FMCG and Pharmaceutical products industries.