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Jafza-UK Trade Up 50 Percent

by Lorys Charalambous, Lowtax.net, Cyprus
18 December, 2014

Dubai's Jebel Ali Free Zone said that it attracted interest from a large number of UK businesses during the two-day Going Global Exhibition held recently in London.

Jafza participated in the event during a business visit to the UK with the objective of creating awareness about the opportunities in the Middle East and its own key offerings.

More than 200 leading British companies, mainly from the healthcare, engineering, and construction sectors, visited the Jafza stand during the event to explore the possibility of setting up their regional base in the free zone, Jafza said.

Commenting on the business trip, Ibrahim Mohamed Aljanahi, Deputy CEO of Jafza and Chief Commercial Officer of Economic Zones World (EZW), said: "The UK is one of Jafza's key trade partners. UK-Jafza trade has witnessed over 50 percent growth in the last five years, growing from USD1.4bn in 2009 to an estimated USD2.2bn today. The number of British companies in the free zone during the same period grew by 42 percent to reach 465 from 326 in 2009."

Jafza also organized an investor seminar in collaboration with the Middle East Association, which was attended by more than 25 companies keen on exploring business opportunities in the GCC.

During the UK visit, Aljanahi had a series of meetings with leading business consultants and representatives of trade, investment, and export promotion organizations, including Peter Bishop, Deputy CEO of the London Chamber of Commerce, and Michael Boyd, Managing Director of Investments in UK Trade & Investment (UKTI). The meetings were aimed at explaining Jafza's strategic role in Dubai and the region's economic development.

The British companies currently based in Jafza include Unilever, Reckitt Benckiser, Aggreko, Cleveland Bridge & Engineering, and GlaxoSmithKline. Most of the UK companies have established their regional headquarters in Jafza to serve West Asia, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and Africa.

The free zone offers a number of benefits to companies established in the zone, including 100 percent foreign ownership, zero percent corporate tax guaranteed for 50 years, zero percent import and re-export duties, zero percent personal income tax, and no restrictions on the repatriation of capital and profits.

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