DMCC adds six new companies each day to its Free Zone. Gautam Sashittal, who joined in 2009 as Chief Operating Officer of DMCC, tells Janaki Krishnamoorthi that the largest Free Zone in the UAE will keep working to keep Dubai as the gateway for that trade.
How has DMCC contributed to the vision it was started with?
DMCC is the largest and fastest growing Free Zone in the UAE now and is a strong example of how a Free Zone can contribute significantly to the UAE's GDP with over 7,400 businesses from start-ups to multinationals currently operating from the Free Zone. Over 95 per cent of these companies are new to Dubai. Over 75,000 people are working and living at the DMCC Free Zone development known as Jumeirah Lakes Towers (JLT).
In just over a decade, DMCC has enabled the flow of trade and enterprise through Dubai to grow immensely. For instance, the flow of gold increased from $6 billion (2003) to $70 billion in 2012; over 25 per cent of the world's physical gold passes through Dubai; the Emirate is now one of the world's top three diamond trading centres, alongside Mumbai, Antwerp and New York; UAE is the world's largest re-exporter of tea with a 60 per cent market share, valued at around $48 million annually.
How many members does DMCC have now and from which business sectors and countries do they belong to?
Currently DMCC has over 7,300 member companies in the Free Zone, one-third of them each are from South Asia, the Middle East (including UAE), and Western Europe/North America. On average, DMCC adds over 200 companies per month to its Free Zone, more than six per day. We aim to cross the 10,000 companies mark by 2015.
What are the expansion plans?
We have seen an increased demand for premium commercial space, particularly from large corporations and multinationals. To cater to this demand, we are planning to expand the DMCC Free Zone through the development of a 107,000 sq m business park with the world's tallest commercial tower. It is in the concept design phase as of now.
What value added services does DMCC offer its members?
We offer several unique benefits to our Free Zone member companies including access to physical facilities, market infrastructure and trading platforms like the Dubai Gold & Commodities Exchange (DGCX), Dubai Diamond Exchange, Dubai Pearl Exchange, Dubai Tea Trading Centre and DMCC Tradeflow, and a range of commodities backed financial investment tools including the region's first and fastest growing derivatives exchange DGCX and Shariah compliant hedge funds. Clustering industry groups, of course, offers significant advantages to our member companies.
Members also enjoy access to freehold property, guaranteed zero per cent corporate and personal income tax, 100 per cent business ownership, all within a secure regulated environment. We are close to ports and airports and well served by two metros. The DMCC Client Service Centre located in Almas Tower allows prospective and existing members to conduct all the necessary start-up requirements in one place Ã» making establishment of a company quick, easy and efficient.
Dubai Multi-commodities Centre (DMCC), established in 2002, has recently become the UAE's largest Free Zone, overtaking Jebel Ali FZ. DMCC's Free Zone development, known as Jumeirah Lakes Towers, now houses 7,400 companies and was established by Dubai government with a mandate to provide the physical, market and financial infrastructure required to set up a commodities market place in Dubai.