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Dubai’s wholesale and retail sector had the fastest rate of growth in the past four years according to the latest data from the Emirates NBD Dubai Economy Tracker Index. The index, which surveys business conditions in the non-oil sector on a monthly basis, registered a score of 57.9 in April, signifying growth in Dubai’s non-oil private sector economy. A score of above 50 indicates expansion, while a score below 50 suggests contraction.
The score, up from 57.6 in March, and the highest since February 2015 shows steady improvement in some sectors. According to the index, the level of incoming business in Dubai was 66.6 in April, the strongest score since the index was established in 2010. New businesses in the wholesale and retail sector drove strong growth. The sector had an individual score of 70.8, indicating an increase in jobs. However, other sectors fared poorly, with jobs declining, such as in the travel and tourism, and construction sectors.
Khatija Haque, head of MENA Research at Emirates NBD, said:
“The sharp rise in output and new work in April is encouraging, as it suggests GDP growth is accelerating after a relatively soft 2018. However, this growth in the volume of activity appears to be underpinned by price discounting, rather than an improvement in underlying demand. As a result, firms are reluctant to boost hiring and consumers are likely to remain cautious.”
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