The on-going implementation of Smart Dubai Strategy, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the U.A.E. and Ruler of Dubai, has bolstered the escalating growth of the emirate's foreign trade in mobile phones with the increasing demand for smart phones to keep up Dubai's comprehensive shift into smart applications and services.
The ambitious strategy of turning Dubai into the smartest city in the globe over three years is a major catalyst for the expansion witnessed by the emirate in the use of smartphones. As set by the vision of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the goal of this gigantic project is "To improve and develop the quality of life through an unprecedented public-private partnership to make a new reality for all and change the concept of city which the human being lives in so as to live with him through his smart phone and who will be its key pivot." Dubai's transition into a smart city places it among the planet's top cities with the highest smartphone penetration. The development of smart government applications is underway in line with the approved methodology announced by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and General Supervisor of the project, who said: "We want a single interface for all Dubai Government applications as all work under one name and that services should be delivered through one gate. Each Dubai department represents all Dubai and our smart applications have to reflect one interface for the emirate." Dubai has remarkably boosted its position in the global telecommunications market, with a massive surge in its foreign trade in mobile and fixed-line telephone devices over the past few years. Trade in telephones scored Dh42.5 billion in the first quarter of 2014, up by 126% compared to Dh18.8 billion recorded in the same period four years ago. Consequently, trade in phones ranked first among other commodities traded in the emirate according to the latest statistics released by Dubai Customs for Q1 of the current year. Dubai's phones trade totalled around Dh163 billion in 2013, representing 12% of Dubai's overall foreign trade volume.
"Because of the emirate's advanced logistics services and great potentials and business opportunities offered by its markets and free zones, Dubai has become a major destination for regional and international telephones trade activity," said H.E Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, Director of Dubai Customs. "Amidst the global information and communications technology boom, Dubai stands as a leading trading hub through which the growing universal demand for latest phone gadgets is met." He added that "Dubai Customs significantly contributes to the rise of Dubai's trade in telephone devices by offering advanced services and facilitations to traders and investors. Due to these streamlined services and expedited customs clearance of consignments, Dubai customs allows traders of phone commodities to respond to the market needs without delay. These value-added facilities got a boost late 2013 when DC transformed into the first fully smart government department delivering its services 24/7 through smart phones. Most recently DC launched its revamped smartphones website with a new look following a comprehensive upgrade of the web portal. Further, DC's service offerings are now available on smart watches too, ahead of the emirate's initiative to become the smartest city in the world within three years." Mr. Juma Al Ghaith, Executive Director of Customs Development Division at Dubai Customs, stated "We work through continuous development of our IT applications to keep pace with Dubai's shift to smart technologies, by providing these technologies to our customers in order to give them access to all our services and our facilities in record time; this fast delivery helps augment their business returns. We seek to constantly streamline our smart tools and our website to stay abreast of the latest international standards on smart services, so as to practically contribute to Dubai's transformation into the smartest city in the world."