Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza), a subsidiary of Dubai-based ports operator DP World, on Tuesday announced that it attracted about 26 steel and construction material companies from 17 countries during the first eight months of 2017.
The Middle East acquired the lion’s share of these companies with 11 firms, followed by Europe and Asia-Pacific region with eight and seven companies, respectively, Jafza said in a statement.
The steel and construction materials companies are expected to maintain their growth in the coming years on the back of the huge volume of the construction projects in the Middle East, DP World’s Chairman Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem stated.
”Jafza has allocated 1.1 million square meters of land for steel and building material companies, which highlights their importance. “This is part of our support of the vision of the country’s leadership to diversify the national economy in a post-oil era,” he added Jafza, the Dubai flagship logistics hub of global trade enabler DP World, said that trade in steel and building material reached AED13.5 billion during 2016 with further increases expected as the free zone continues to develop services for companies in the sector.
Jafza has more than 967 companies operating in the steel and building materials sector from 87 countries around the world. Around a third (37 percent) are Middle East-based, 27 percent are from the Asia-Pacific region, 26 percent from Europe, 7 percent from North America and 3 percent from Africa. Indian businesses have the largest share with 14 percent with UAE-based companies at 13 percent. The sector employs more than 18,000 people, which is 13 percent of total Jafza sponsored employees.
A report published earlier by Business Monitor International (BMI) Research expected that the Middle East and North Africa region would top the international construction market in terms of growth rate on the medium- and the long-term.
Value of the construction market is expected to expand from US$225 trillion in 2018 to US$330 trillion in 2022.
Source: Emirates News Agency