Dubai's non-oil foreign trade hit a record Dhs1 trillion in the first 10 months of this year, up 13 per cent on the same period in 2011.
New data, released yesterday, shows that overseas non-oil trade hit Dhs1.029 billion in the period from January to October 2012, compared to the Dhs911 billion recorded in the ten months last year.
Crown Prince of Dubai HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum said the strong figures showed the success of the emirate’s efforts to adopt “international standards and best practices” in order to encourage “successful partnerships with regional and international businesses ”.
He also said the growth in the emirate’s foreign trade reflects the strength of local economy in “surpassing the repercussions of the world financial crisis.” The trillion-dirham bounty includes direct trade, trade from free zones and warehouse customs trade, said Ahmed Butti Ahmed, director general of Dubai Customs  and executive chairman of Ports, Customs and Free Zones.
The bullish figures posted by the emirate this year are in part due to Dubai’s “modern and reliable” ports and airports and its position as a “major gateway to the region’s trade with the rest of the world,” Ahmed said.
He added that the value of trade recorded in the first ten months of the year is almost equal to the Dhs1.1 billion total for the whole of 2011.
The new figures show that India  remains Dubai’s major trading partner, with total trade between the two nations valued at Dhs127 billion until the end of October. Next on the list was the other Asian giant - China - which saw trade with Dubai hit Dhs94 billion over the ten months. Third was Switzerland with Dhs94 billion; fourth the United States with commercial exchanges worth Dhs59 billion and Turkey was in fifth place with Dhs42 billion-worth of trade. The value of trade with these five countries alone was Dhs395 billion - or 38.5 per cent of Dubai’s total non-oil trade.
When it comes to the emirate’s imports over the period, gold topped the list with a value of Dhs113 billion, followed by communications networks equipment worth Dhs42 billion, diamonds worth Dhs38 billion, and cars worth Dhs26 billion.