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20 July 2024

Drone test flights for goods delivery by Jafz

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum witnesses Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority's futuristic concept of "Delivery by Jafza" using unmanned aerial vehicle in Dubai on Tuesday. Salma Hareb is also seen in the picture. (SUPPLIED)

By Waheed Abbas

Jebel Ali Free Zone Authority (Jafza) is working on unmanned aerial vehicle for the delivery of goods to its customers.

A demonstration was given to Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai World, in Dubai on Tuesday night at a ceremony which was also attended by Salma Hareb, CEO of Jafza and Economic Zones World.

The service is believed to be launched initially within the free zone and then later expanded outside the zone, a spokesperson said but refused to disclose the launch timeframe of the service.

The UAE is conducting pilot tests to introduce unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for a range of civilian government services including delivering documents to the public and monitoring traffic.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, personally attended pilot tests for the UAVs, which are also known as drones, during the Government Summit in February.

Salma Hareb said Jafza is currently home to more than 7,300 companies including over 120 Global Fortune 500 enterprises. These companies are estimated to have generated trade worth over $90 billion in 2013.

Around 613 multinationals joined Jafz in 2013, posting an increase of 28 per cent on the number of new companies that joined free zone in the previous year.

In 2013, 30 per cent of the new companies came from developed and developing economies of Asia, 29 per cent from Europe and Americas and remaining from the GCC and the Middle East. In terms of countries, the largest number of foreign investors came from India followed by China, UK and the US. The trend reinforces Jafza’s growing stature as a dynamic hub and a business facilitator for multinationals.