Jebel Ali Free Zone, Jafza, a DP World Company, won the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Business Innovation Award, a Dubai Chamber of Commerce initiative to recognise companies that are leaders in innovation and who contribute to the development of the nation’s economy.
H.H. Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, and Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group presented the award to Ahmad Al Haddad, Chief Operating Officer, Parks and Zones – DP World, UAE Region.
Jafza’s consideration for the award comes from the free zone’s longstanding track record of many “firsts”, including being the first free zone in the Middle East, the first free zone to launch an e-services portal, and the only free zone to win the Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Award for Best M-Government Service Award.
Jafza is also noted for the quality of its services and was recognised as the B’est Free Zone for Large Companies’ in 2017 by ‘fDi Magazine’. The company’s leading position among Dubai’s free zones is underscored by its contributions to the emirate’s economy, accounting for over 70 percent of total free zone trade value and 97 percent of total trade volume in 2017.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and CEO of DP World said: “Jebel Ali Free Zone is honoured to win the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Business Innovation Award and we would like to thank the Dubai Government for recognising our achievements over the past three decades. Jafza has always strived towards being an industry leader that can serve as an example for other businesses in the UAE and help raise standards for the sector across the board.
“Innovation has always been a core part of our business strategy, and we continually develop customised services and solutions that cater to our customers’ requirements. Through innovation, we seek to support the government’s efforts to establish Dubai as a global trade hub through economic diversification reaffirm our commitment to these goals and support our society by bringing increased economic prosperity.”
The free zone is expected to experience high levels of growth with Expo 2020 fast approaching, which will boost Dubai’s economy. In turn, Jebel Ali Free Zone and Jebel Ali Port, have together become a key growth engine for Dubai, contributing to 33.4 percent of Dubai’s total GDP in 2017, and 14.9 percent of the UAE’s non-oil GDP. Jafza also accounts for 23.9 percent of Dubai’s total FDI inflow, making it the largest source of foreign direct investment into the city.
The port and free zone also serve as major sources of employment, accounting for 16.2 percent of Dubai’s total workforce.