Dubai’s food and beverage trade with Africa reaches $13.9 billion over 2015-2020 period

  • In-depth analysis on Dubai-Africa F&B trade opportunities released in the lead up to GBF Africa 2021, which is organised by Dubai Chamber in partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai.
  • In 2020, Dubai’s total F&B trade with Africa amounted to $2.4 billion, reaching the highest level since 2017.

Dubai, UAE: Dubai’s food and beverage trade, excluding tobacco, reached $13.9 billion during the 2015-2020 period, while the sector has been identified as a key factor expected to drive bilateral trade in the short-term, new Dubai Chamber analysis has revealed.

In 2020, the value of food and beverage trade (excluding tobacco) between Dubai and Africa amounted to $2.4 billion in food and beverage trade, marking a growth rate of 18 percent compared to the previous year and the highest level since 2017. 

Dubai’s food and beverage trade with Africa accounted for around 13% of the emirate’s total trade volume with the continent, over the same period, excluding trade in gold, jewellery and precious stones. Dubai’s exports in this category amounted to 31 percent of the trade volume, and re-exports represented 23 percent.

The analysis was released in the lead up to the 6th Global Business Forum Africa, organised by Dubai Chamber in partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai. The study highlighted Dubai-Africa F&B bilateral trade trends by region, as well as the potential avenues for future cooperation.

In 2020, North Africa accounted for the largest share of Dubai-Africa F&B trade, reaching a value of $971.2 million, followed by East Africa ($828.3 million). Southern Africa ranked third among Dubai’s largest food and beverage trading partners, with a total value of $362.9 million. 

According UNCTAD data, Africa registered a negative trade balance of $20.1 billion in F&B products with the world, and this trend was most prevalent in North, Middle, and Western Africa, indicating sizeable business opportunities in those regions.

The study concluded with a positive outlook for Dubai-Africa F&B bilateral trade, given Africa’s expanding urban F&B market, which offers vast opportunities for Dubai investors in warehousing and cold storage for agricultural outputs, farm equipment, transport, and repair services, among others.

GBF Africa 2021 will be organised at Dubai Exhibition Centre at Expo 2020 Dubai under the theme Transformation Through Trade, with the forum bringing government and business leaders from the UAE, Africa and other markets together to explore new prospects for economic cooperation and investment opportunities in promising African markets. 

As the Official Business Integration Partner for Expo 2020 Dubai, Dubai Chamber is organising several high-level business forums at the mega event, with the 6th GBF Africa taking place October 13-14th, 2021 at Expo 2020 Dubai, followed by the inaugural GBF ASEAN and the 4th GBF Latin America.  

About Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry:

Established in 1965, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry is a non-profit public entity, whose mission is to represent, support and protect the interests of the business community in Dubai by creating a favourable business environment, supporting the development of business, and by promoting Dubai as an international business hub.