Jafza expects more than 15% growth in F&B sector in the Free Zone in 2015

Press release
Published February 16th, 2015 - 08:16 GMT
Ibrahim Mohamed Aljanahi and the Ambassador of Colombia at Gulfood
Ibrahim Mohamed Aljanahi and the Ambassador of Colombia at Gulfood

Jebel Ali Free Zone (Jafza), the flagship free zone operation of Dubai and trade and logistics hub for the wider Middle East region, has posted 13% increase in the number of food and beverage (F&B) companies in the Free Zone in 2014. It expects more than 15% growth in the number of new companies in the sector in the current fiscal.

The Free Zone’s growth projection is based on the rapidly growing interest of multinationals in the food and beverage sector in the wider Middle East region. More than 1700 F&B companies from Europe, Latin America and Asia visited Jafza stand in Gulfood and have shown keen interest in the Free Zone facilities to reach and serve the rapidly expanding markets in West Asia, Africa, the CIS, as well as Indian subcontinent, which Jafza as the hub serves. Seven new F&B companies have applied for setting up their regional base at the Free Zone during the 5-day Gulfood Exhibition that concluded on Thursday.

Ibrahim Mohamed Aljanahi, Deputy CEO of Jafza and Chief Commercial Officer of Economic Zones World, the parent company of the Free Zone, commenting on Jafza’s remarkable success at the region’s largest food industry event said:

“Overwhelming interest of leading companies from the food and beverage industry in Jafza facilities has reinforced the Free Zone’s status as the business and re-distribution hub for the GCC, Iraq, Iran, Levant, Africa, the CIS and Indian Subcontinent, a thriving market of more than 2 billion people. Rising per capita income, growing demand for healthy food and the governments’ focus on developing local food processing capability in the region have opened new avenues and long-term growth opportunities for global companies in the F&B sector. I invite all the investors in the region to use Jafza’s time-tested facilities to serve the region in the most efficient manner.”

Jafza stand at the exhibition also received top governmental officials from several countries from Europe and Latin America who were interested in collaborating with Jafza to establish and grow their footprint in the rapidly growing F&B markets in the region.

Senior diplomats and officials from trade development bodies that visited Jafza stand during Gulfood included the Ambassador of Colombia, the Ambassador of Brazil, senior officials from Tucuman State in Argentina, several trade promotion bodies from Spain including Castilla La Mancha Export Agency, Invest Andalusia and government of Catalonia, Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), Scottish Development International, UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) and Apex Brasil. Jafza stand also received business delegations from Germany, Spain and Tangier Port and Free Zone. 

Jafza is currently home to over 460 top multinationals in the F&B sector such as Unilever, Heinz, Kraft, P&G, PepsiCo, and Gulf Food Industries among others. These companies serve the wider Middle East region comprising South and West Asia, Africa and the CIS, a market with more than 2 billion people, from their Jafza base. 

The Food and Beverage sector in Jafza generated trade worth AED 17.56 billion in 2013 up almost 15% from 2012. The total trade generated by the sector is estimated to have crossed AED 20 billion in 2014.   

Background Information

Jebel Ali Free Zone

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