H.E. Ahmed Butti Ahmed, Dubai Customs Director General received in Al Shaheen Hall at the Department a French delegation headed by the French Consul General in Dubai, H.E. Eric Giraud-Thelme and a number of French businessmen in the presence of Mr. Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, Executive Director of Client Management Division, Mr. Abbas Makki, Act Executive Director of Dubai Customs World and Director of External Relations at Dubai Customs and Mr. Yousuf Ozair, Senior Manager of IPR Department at Dubai Customs.
At the beginning of the meeting, H.E. Ahmed Butti thanked the French Consul for coordinating the visit which is aimed at expanding the horizons of cooperation between the two sides and facilitating commercial business. H.E. Ahmed Butti pointed out that as part of the recently launched program; ERTIBAT, Dubai Customs always seeks to communicate with the business council of the different countries in order to listen to their different complaints and suggestions in order to further develop the customs workflow process as a whole and to contribute to providing a professional business environment marked with transparency.
H.E. Ahmed Butti stated that the number of French companies in Dubai exceeds 400 in addition to more than 700 companies operating within partnerships with other organizations in Dubai. Furthermore, French residents in Dubai amounted to over 15 thousand individuals which reflects the massive increasing growth of the relations between the two countries.
H.E. Giraud-Thelme expressed his thankfulness to H.E. Ahmed Butti and the official directors at the Department for receiving them especially Mr. Musabih and Mr. Yosif Al Sahlawi, Senior Executive Director of Corporate Affairs as well as Mr. Ozair. He commended as well the Department’s persistent efforts to develop the business environment in Dubai and facilitate trade positioning Dubai as the home for several international and regional companies.
H.E. Ahmed Butti clarified that Customs faces a huge challenge in achieving balance between facilitating trade and combating counterfeit goods.
Subsequently, Mr. Eman Al Suwaidy, Senior Manager of Client Partnership gave a presentation on ERTIBAT Project and its significance in fostering relations between Customs and its clients and its role in attracting strategic clients in coordination with the trade attachés in Dubai. She addressed as well the mutual economic relations between the two countries , the importing, exporting and re-exporting processes and the top exchanged items between both sides.
During the meeting, the businessmen provided their suggestions and different issues related to the HS Code of the goods where an attendee noted that he noticed a difference in the HS Code of the same product in two gulf countries. Another businessman suggested that suppliers must cooperate with Customs in reporting any suspicious goods. However, H.E. Ahmed Butti clarified that Customs is unable to stop suppliers from competing, Customs can only combat counterfeiting and duplication in this respect.
Perfumes headed Dubai’s imports from France in 2010 at 10% of the emirate’s total imports, and a value of about AED00 million, followed by medicaments at 5% or AED 400 million, and turbo-jets and propellers at almost the same percentage. As of exports to France, ceramics took the lead at approximately AED 56 million, followed by oils and fractions at AED 50 million, and in the third place comes the polyacetals, other polyethers, and epoxide resins with a value of more than AED 26.5 million. As of re-exports to France, jewelry did more than AED 185 million, followed by turbo-jets and propellers at AED 95 million.
In 2010, France ranked 11th in the list of global importers from Dubai with a total volume of AED 800 million, and 36th in the list of exporters to Dubai with a value of more than AED 228 million, and 35th in the list of Dubai’s re-exported destinations at more than half a billion.
Mrs. Marion Joth, Intellectual Property Consultant in the Middle East Region thanked the Department for the great support to protecting the regulations of intellectual property. She also called for registering brands by the trademark owners in the Ministry of Economy and the Intellectual Property Right (IPR) Department at Dubai Customs in order to ensure their rights and protect their brands.
H.E. Ahmed Butti closed the meeting with an confirmation that Dubai Customs will continue to support the French companies and requested their constant communication with the Department with regards to any suggestion or complaint they might have.