The UAE freight and logistics market is estimated to witness a CAGR of ~5.8% during the forecasted period of 2020-2025. The market is driven by the presence of developed logistics infrastructure and the strategic position of the country as a transshipment point.

Market Snapshot

Study Period:


Base Year:



Greater Than 5.8 %

Major Players:

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Market Overview

The logistics industry in UAE is undergoing a massive transformation due to diversification plans of the logistics industry in UAE, harmonization of regional trade and export regulations, expansion and modernization of logistics companies. UAE is a part of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), therefore logistics companies are expected to benefit from trade policies in the GCC region. UAE's geographical location and infrastructure make it an ideal supply and re-distribution gateway and offer huge growth potential for the operating logistics players. It is strategically located at the center of international trade making it globally well-positioned as an emerging transshipment hub.

  • Jebel Ali in Dubai and Port Khalifa in Abu Dhabi are the top two Emirati ports. The transshipment hub of Jebel Ali is the regional heavyweight, with a capacity for 22.1 million TEUs, or 20-foot equivalent units, of cargo in 2018.
  • Economic diversification and development of industrial export-oriented centers and free trade zones are going to boost the logistics industry in UAE. Additionally, transportation infrastructure development and new technology solutions are likely to strengthen the infrastructure required for the multi-modal transportation system.

Scope of the Report

The report UAE freight and logistics market provides the insights on the market like Market Overview, Market Dynamics, Technology Innovation and its Impact, Impact of Ecommerce Growth on the Market, Impact of Regulations on Logistics Sector, Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis, Insights on Cross-Border Trade, Insights on Logistics Infrastructure Development in UAE. 

The report provides qualitative and quantitative analysis of the segmentation BY FUNCTION (Freight Transport, Freight Forwarding, Warehousing, Courier, Express, and Parcel, Value-added Services, Cold Chain Logistics, Last Mile Logistics, Return Logistics, and Other Emerging Areas, and BY END-USER (Construction, Oil & Gas and Quarrying, Agriculture, Fishing, and Forestry, Manufacturing & Automotive, Distributive Trade, Others (Pharmaceutical and Healthcare). 

Furthermore, the report also provides company profiles to understand the competitive landscape of the market. 

Freight Transport
Sea and Inland
Freight Forwarding
Courier, Express, and Parcel
Value-added Services
Cold Chain Logistics, Last Mile Logistics, Return Logistics, and Other Emerging Areas
Oil & Gas and Quarrying
Agriculture, Fishing, and Forestry
Manufacturing & Automotive
Distributive Trade
Others (Pharmaceutical and Healthcare)

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Key Market Trends

Growing Pharmaceutical Industry in UAE Driving Logistics

The pharmaceutical sector in the MENA has witnessed tremendous growth over the last few years and is projected to reach around USD 60 billion by 2025, with USD 1.2-billion allocated for the healthcare system in the 2019 budget. The UAE is leading the growth with over USD 1.2 billion funneled into the healthcare system in the 2019 budget, on top of substantial funds allotted in the USD 540 million innovation fund. With the recent approval of the Dubai Silk Road Strategy and existing outstanding logistics infrastructure, the UAE is fast turning into a source market in the supply chain, manufacturing and exporting pharmaceuticals to high-demand markets such as Africa and Asia.

Accelerated drug-registration systems, investments in R&D, innovation, and technological advancement, has led to a rise in the number of international pharmaceutical companies from 30 in 2013 to 47 in 2016 and is expected to reach 75 in 2020. Moreover, around 95% of the global pharmaceutical companies have a base in the UAE, which gives them logistics access to 43 countries worldwide. the rise of UAE as a regional pharmaceutical hub has led to the growth of cold chain facilities and services in the region in conjunction with the growth of the pharmaceutical industry. 

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Dubai Maritime Transportation Improving

The logistics infrastructure in the UAE is one of the best in the world according to the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2018. In light of the attention paid to infrastructure quality by the UAE in general and Dubai in particular, UAE topped some major infrastructure quality indicators. In the port infrastructure quality index, the United Arab Emirates ranked fourth globally and first among the GCC countries. The UAE has a strong link with most of the world’s ports, according to the liner shipping connectivity index, where the UAE ranked first among GCC countries in the last three years. In Dubai, the maritime transport sector is of great importance to the economy of the Emirate due to the great openness of the Emirate to international trade through is access to the Gulf. The sector provides a high-quality infrastructure that consists of ports, logistic services, and storage.

There are three main ports that serve Dubai: Jebel Ali Free Zone Port, Mina Rashid, and Mina Al Hamriya, in addition to traditional piers along the Dubai Creek. The number of ships arriving at the 3 ports was 21,849 in 2018 compared to 20,891 ships in 2017, an increase of 5%. Maritime transport has developed in the Emirate as a result of highly developed infrastructure constructed in Jebel Ali Port, which is ranked the ninth largest port in the world. Jebel Ali Port. In 2018, the value of Dubai’s foreign trade of goods (imported and exported) amounted to AED 1.3 billion and half of it was transported via this port.

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Competitive Landscape

The UAE freight and logistics market is competitive and fragmented with many international and local players actively competing for market share. The technology integration in the logistics sector is high and the emergence of digital players in the pool is increasing. Ecommerce growth has also helped in the emergence of digital players in the region. With the overall logistics infrastructure in the country developing rapidly the rivalry within the industry is expected to be fueled further. 

Table Of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions and Market Definition

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Market Dynamics

      1. 4.2.1 Drivers

      2. 4.2.2 Restraints

      3. 4.2.3 Opportunities

    3. 4.3 Technology Innovation and its Impact

    4. 4.4 Impact of Ecommerce Growth on the Market

    5. 4.5 Impact of Regulations on Logistics Sector

    6. 4.6 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis

    7. 4.7 Insights on Cross-Border Trade

    8. 4.8 Insights on Logistics Infrastructure Development in UAE


    1. 5.1 BY FUNCTION

      1. 5.1.1 Freight Transport

        1. Road

        2. Rail

        3. Sea and Inland

        4. Air

      2. 5.1.2 Freight Forwarding

      3. 5.1.3 Warehousing

      4. 5.1.4 Courier, Express, and Parcel

      5. 5.1.5 Value-added Services

      6. 5.1.6 Cold Chain Logistics, Last Mile Logistics, Return Logistics, and Other Emerging Areas

    2. 5.2 BY END-USER

      1. 5.2.1 Construction

      2. 5.2.2 Oil & Gas and Quarrying

      3. 5.2.3 Agriculture, Fishing, and Forestry

      4. 5.2.4 Manufacturing & Automotive

      5. 5.2.5 Distributive Trade

      6. 5.2.6 Others (Pharmaceutical and Healthcare)


    1. 6.1 Overview (Market Concentration and Major Players)

    2. 6.2 Company Profiles

      1. 6.2.1 International Players


        2. FedEx

        3. DHL

        4. AL FUTTAIM

        5. UPS

        6. RAK Logistics

        7. RSA Global

        8. Agility

        9. Ceva Logistics Fzco

        10. Damco

        11. Freight International LLC

        12. Allied Transport Company

        13. Hellman Worldwide Logistics LLC

        14. Kerry Logistics


        16. NIPPON EXPRESS


      2. 6.2.2 List of Other Logistics Players

  7. 7. APPENDIX

    1. 7.1 GDP Distribution, by Activity

    2. 7.2 Insights on Capital Flows in the Market

    3. 7.3 Economic Statistics - Transport and Storage Sector Contribution to Economy

    4. 7.4 External Trade Statistics - Export and Import, by Product


** Subject to Availability

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