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UAE Free Zones' Operations Expanding

by Lorys Charalambous, Lowtax.net, Cyprus
13 January, 2015

Free trade zones in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have reported a seven percent year-on-year increase in trade flows to AED269.6bn (USD73.4bn) for the first six months of 2014.

In the same period, trade by weight had increased by 27 percent compared with the same period of 2013, reaching 16m tons. 11.2m tons were imports, 1.1m tons were exports, and 3.7m tons were re-exports.

Mobile phones were the top product imported into the UAE's free zones during the reporting period, accounting for 21 percent of the total imports by value. They were also the most re-exported product, accounting for 30 percent of all re-exports from the free zones.

Other key imports to the free zones included vehicles, computer monitors, and projectors. The main exports included cigarettes, optical guidance systems for ships, firefighting equipment for ships, and copper wire.

The Federal Customs Authority said that the UAE's free trade zones have been experiencing exponential growth in recent years as a result of the Government's flexible trade policies and the various facilities provided by the UAE to attract major companies from around the world to establish factories in the free zones.

The free zones in the UAE provide a number of tax incentives to companies operating within them, such as zero percent personal and corporate tax rates and zero percent import and re-export duties.


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