UAE Tops MENA in Fighting Illicit Trade: Minister of Economy

ABU DHABI, 20th November, 2018 – The UAE is a safe haven not just for individuals but for businesses as well, thanks to its robust regulations and strict implementation of laws for protecting copyrights and fighting all kinds of illicit trade, said Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy.

Addressing the 5th International Trade Development Week here today, the minister said that the UAE has been rated the top country in the Middle East and Africa in fighting illicit trade.

“The UAE is the third best nation in the world in terms of re-exports, boasting a prestigious international status as a significant global trade hub thanks to its efficient legislation and significant partnerships with various international organisations and world governments,” the minister added in the event which was attended by the Secretary-General of UNCTAD, Dr. Mukhisa Kituyi, and 100 speakers from a number of world governments and organsiations, along with 800 participants from various world countries.

During his speech, Al Mansouri noted that the UAE, in consolidation of its efforts to combat illicit trade, issued Federal Law No. 19 for countering commercial fraud.

Al Mansouri further said that the country enjoys an excellent business environment and a vibrant trade sector, with its 2017 foreign trade amounting to around AED1.6 trillion, including free zone trade, of which imports made up AED979 billion and re-exports AED443 billion.

The UAE’s non-oil exports grew significantly during the same year to around AED190 billion, from AED60 billion 10 years ago, he further added.

The conference aims to promote international action to counter the risks of illegal cross-border trade, and witnesses a senior ministerial meeting on recent global developments in combatting such practices, as well as discussions and seminars attended by over 100 speakers. The conference’s participants include a large number of regional and international organisations, such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, the International Crime Organisation, the International Customs Network, the European Anti-Fraud Office, OLAF, the European Commission, the International Air Transport Association, IATA, the Transnational Anti-Illicit Trade Coalition, and the Global Free Zones, as well as speakers and experts from around the world.