Feb 11 2013

UAE-Japan trade up to AED195bn in 2012

UAE-Japan trade up to AED195bn in 2012 Photo Credit:Reuters/Toru Hanai

Monday, Feb 11, 2013

Abu Dhabi: Trade exchange between the UAE and Japan rose to Dh195 billion ($53.1 billion) in 2012, up by 6 per cent compared to Dh184.1 billion ($50.16 billion), Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro) said.

Nasser Ahmad Al Suwaidi, head of Abu Dhabi Economic Development Department, said Japan is one of the major UAE trade partners and that it is the second importer of UAE crude oil.

“The UAE is Japan’s major economic partner in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region as it provides Japan with 23 per cent of its oil needs,” said Al Suwaidi.

Speaking in a meeting with Toshimitsu Motegi, Japanese Minister of trade, economy and industry, who signed 10 bilateral agreements with Abu Dhabi government and semi-government entities in the fields of research, education, health, energy and investment, Al Suwaidi said that the UAE is Japan’s second biggest GCC trade partner after Saudi Arabia with imports worth Dh30.3 billion ($8.2 billion), adding that the UAE’s imports from Japan are motors and electronics.

The UAE’s exports to Japan grew by almost 3 per cent to Dh161.9 billion ($44.1 billion) in 2012 compared to Dh156.78 billion ($42.72 billion) in 2011.

The UAE’s exports to Japan were mostly mineral fuels that include crude oils and other gaseous hydrocarbons, gas and aluminium, while UAE’s imports were mainly general machinery and automobiles.

Jetro added that the amount of UAE’s imports from Japan grew by 21 per cent to Dh32.99 billion ($8.99 billion) in 2012 compared to Dh27.31 billion ($7.44 billion) in 2011.

Al Suwaidi said that Japan is also a major investor in the UAE, as there are 306 Japanese companies operating in the UAE.

Motegi said that his country is giving due concern to the region, particularly the UAE and Abu Dhabi which is witnessing great progress at all levels.

“We seek further cooperation in various fields with the UAE and this is why we are here to discuss the scope of enhancing cooperation further with our Emirati partners,” said Motegi.

He added Japan is ready to share its expertise and successful experiences, especially in the fields of technology and knowledge with the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, stating that today’s forum, and the large Japanese delegation, materialise the aspirations of the governments of the two countries to achieve their goals in the near future.

Mohammad Amerah, an economic adviser at the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry told Gulf News that the Japanese projects in the UAE exceed Dh11 billion ($3 billion) with major focus on hydrocarbon sector.

Amerah attributed the increase in trade exchange to the rate of US dollar to Japanese Yen, saying that this has driven both countries to increase their trade exchanges.

“The low exchange rate of the US dollar to Japanese Yen led increased bilateral trade exchanges,” said Amerah.

“The low exchange rate of the dollar against the Japanese yen had contributed to the rise in trade exchange between both countries which has been boosted further by the high level of public spending by the Japanese government to encourage businesses and investments in the country,” concluded Amerah.

By Shehab Al Makahleh Staff Reporter

Gulf News 2013. All rights reserved.

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