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UAE-Japan trade volume reaches Dh75.8 billion in first five months of 2024

UAE-Japan trade volume reaches Dh75.8 billion in first five months of 2024
9 July 2024 09:07

MUSTAFA ABDEL AZIM (ABU DHABI)

The trade exchange volume between the UAE and Japan during the first five months of 2024 amounted to approximately Dh75.8 billion ($20.65 billion), compared to Dh71.9 billion ($19.6 billion) for the same period in 2023, marking a growth rate of 5.4%, according to statistics from the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO).
The statistics showed that trade exchange between the two countries increased by 22% in May, reaching Dh14.75 billion ($4.02 billion), compared to Dh11.8 billion ($3.29 billion) for the same month in 2023.

The UAE’s exports to Japan, which include petroleum products, recorded an increase of 4.1% from January to May 2024, reaching about Dh59.78 billion ($16.03 billion), compared to Dh57.4 billion ($15.6 billion) for the same period last year. Imports from Japan also increased during that period, reaching approximately Dh16.95 billion ($4.62 billion), compared to Dh14.49 billion ($3.95 billion) for the same period last year, a growth of 16.5%. This brings the trade surplus between the two countries to about Dh41.8 billion ($11.4 billion) in favour of the UAE.

For May 2024, the UAE’s exports to Japan amounted to more than Dh12 billion ($3.28 billion), compared to about Dh9 billion ($2.46 billion) in May 2023, a growth of 33.3%. The imports amounted to about Dh2.7 billion ($737 million), compared to about Dh3 billion ($829 million) for the same month last year.

According to data obtained by Aletihad, the UAE accounted for 43.6% of Japan’s total trade with Middle Eastern countries during the first five months of 2024, estimated at Dh173.7 billion ($47.3 billion). The UAE ranked first among the region’s countries in terms of total exports, at $16.2 billion, followed by Saudi Arabia with exports worth $12.9 billion. In terms of total imports, the UAE imported goods worth $4.6 billion, followed by Saudi Arabia with $2.14 billion, making up 75.4% of Japan’s total trade with Middle Eastern countries.

The UAE is the largest Gulf partner in trade dealings with Japan, importing the highest share of Gulf imports from Japan, primarily consisting of cars, electronic devices, machinery, and textiles. The country’s exports to Japan are concentrated in crude oil and natural gas, in addition to various forms of aluminium. Petroleum products constitute the highest percentage of the UAE’s exports to Japan, and the UAE is the second largest supplier of crude oil to Japan after Saudi Arabia.

The UAE is Japan’s tenth largest trading partner globally, according to 2021 statistics, providing 23% of Japan’s total oil requirements. There are over 340 Japanese companies operating in the UAE in various sectors, including infrastructure, industry, and energy. The total UAE-Japanese trade exchange in 2023 amounted to about $47.4 billion, of which $15.6 billion was non-oil trade, growing by 6.1% compared to 2022.

Japan ranks ninth globally among the UAE’s largest trading partners and fifth in terms of imports. The UAE is also Japan’s largest trading partner among the Gulf Cooperation Council countries in terms of exports and imports, receiving 47% of Japanese exports to the Council countries.

The UAE represents a reliable source for supplying Japan with energy and is a strategic partner in various fields. It is the largest supplier of oil to Japan, with oil exports in April amounting to about 35.8 million barrels, representing more than 45% of Japan’s imports during the month. Oil exports in 2023 represented 44.7% of Japan’s total oil imports. Notably, the UAE accounts for about 60% of foreign direct investment flows to Japan from the Middle East in 2023 and attracted about 82% of total Japanese investments in Middle Eastern countries during the same year.

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