In continued efforts towards building stronger trade ties between the UAE and Japan, Dubai Airport Freezone (DAFZA) winner of the fDi Magazine Global Ranking Free Zone of the Future 2012/13 recently organised a networking event for Japanese investors and companies.
The event attended by the Consul General of Japan and officials from Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) and Japan Business Council (JBC) aimed at further strengthening relations with Japanese investors, and providing information on the highly advanced, modern facilities and services provided by the Freezone.
Speaking at the event, Nasser Al Madani, Assistant Director General of DAFZA said: “As the number one Free zone in the world, DAFZA offers a wealth of opportunities to companies operating within the Freezone that Japanese investors can hugely benefit from. The state-of-the-art infrastructure and facilities we provide ensure that we make every effort to make our tenant’s investment profitable.”
“The event has been a great success for us in bringing together Japanese investors from across the UAE and in generating interest to start their business in DAFZA. This helps Japanese businesses to meet their strategic business goals and also makes a positive impact in supporting the UAE’s in its mission to bring in foreign investment.”
Commenting on the event’s success, His Excellency Daisuke Matsunaga, Consul General of Japan congratulated DAFZA on becoming the number one free zone in the world, and said: “This event gave us a great platform to discuss strategic partnerships and allow the opportunity to exchange the technological knowhow and best practices that DAFZA offers being the fastest growing and the best free zone in the world.”
He also stressed that his country is seeking to further strengthen the relations with the UAE through strategic business partnerships. He said: “It is the award-winning services of DAFZA, and accommodative investment laws and legislation in the UAE that make it such a popular business hub amongst foreign investors to set up their Middle East headquarters in Dubai.”
In 2012, the UAE maintained its position as the largest market for Japanese products in the Middle East with the value of bilateral trade rising by 37.58% to USD 50.38 billion, compared to USD 36.62 billion in 2010. Exports to the UAE grew by 1.82% to USD 7,466.13 million, while imports grew by 46.53%t to USD 42,912.73 million in 2011.
Asian companies in DAFZA represent more than 17% of the tenants while the Japanese companies represent more than 32% of the Asian sector. Currently, Japan is one of the 10 most active countries in the Freezone representing 45 companies working in service, commerce and industrial sectors such as Sumitomo, Toyota, Toshiba, Kawasaki and many others.
Before joining SME Advisor, I worked as a producer/reporter for Forbes Media in New York. I obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and International Studies at the University of South Florida in the US. I am currently in Dubai working as Sub-Editor for SME Advisor Middle East, which is a business magazine published by CPI. You can follow me on Twitter: @joumanasaad or @SMEadvisorME and (Joumana Saad) or (SME Advisor) on LinkedIn.