Statistics issued by Dubai Customs have demonstrated that the Emirate boosted its position as a global trader of fresh produce through the opening six months of the year.
The figures, published by Gulf News, showed that Dubai's trade in fruit and vegetables came to Dh6.4n (€1.3bn) through the half, up 19 per cent from Dh5.4bn (€1.1bn) in the same period of 2012.
Fresh produce imports entering local markets reached Dh4.6bn (€928m), rising from Dh3.9bn (€786m) in the previous year, while exports and re-exports grew to Dh1.8bn (€363m) from Dh1.5bn (€302m) in 2012.
According to the report, the change reflected growing demand for fresh produce domestically, driven by a booming population, an emerging economy and Dubai's leading position as a regional re-exporter.
For fruit, the US was the leading exporter to Dubai with about 25 per cent of shipments into the Emirate, while Iran was the leading market for export or re-exports from Dubai with a 15 per cent share.
Meanwhile, for vegetables, Iran again led the export/re-export list with 24 per cent of the total, while India was the leading exporter to Dubai with a 15 per cent share.