Dubai tops global duty-free spending league

2005 Middle East Exclusive

SHOPPERS at Dubai Duty Free spend an average of $45 a head – three times more than anywhere else in the world.

The figures were released on the eve of the 2005 Middle East Exclusive exhibition, presented by Channels Exhibitions under the patronage of HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of the Department of Civil Aviation, Dubai, and chairman of Emirates airline, and with the support of Dubai Duty Free and Middle East Duty Free Association.
In Europe, the average duty free is less than $15 per head and below $10 in North America. Dubai’s nearest competitor is the Middle East region as a whole, averaging $15.59 per head. Dubai Duty Free is on course for total retail sales in 2006 to reach $600 million, up 18 per cent on last year’s figures, with luxury goods accounting for 49.5 per cent of the purchases and underlining the value of Middle East Exclusive as a showcase for elite brands.
At this year’s event there was a particularly strong focus on the greater Middle East, including the subcontinent and ex-CIS countries, an area that encompasses India, Iran, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Turkey, Cyprus, Africa, Uzbekistan, Moldova, Georgia, and the Ukraine. Buyer delegations from across this wider region have been confirmed.
Commenting on Middle East Exclusive, Colm McLoughlin, Dubai Duty Free’s managing director and president of the Middle East Duty Free Association, said: “I am delighted to see that the Middle East Exclusive exhibition has grown year-on-year and think that it is offering an important platform for the duty free industry in this region. As the Middle East is the fastest growing region for the duty free industry, it is only right that the exhibition reflects the tremendous growth and vibrancy that exist in the industry in this part of the world.”