Bahrain-GCC trade in Q1 2021 hits US$1.76 billion
The total value of trade between the GCC and Bahrain in Q1 2021 reached US$1.76 billion, a rise of 6 percent compared to the same period last year, according to the latest figures released by Bahrain’s eGovernment and Information Authority.
Accounting for more than a third of this figure, non-oil bilateral trade between the UAE and Bahrain in Q1 2021 increased by 15 percent from Q1 2020 to US$ 639 million. Trade between Saudi and Bahrain accounted for 45 percent of the total Bahrain-GCC trade, at US$789 million. Trade between Oman and Bahrain increased by 27 percent to US$230 million in the same period. Oman was followed by Kuwait, which recorded US$98 million in bilateral trade in Q1 2021.
Discussing the trade figures, Ali Al Mudaifa, Executive Director of Bahrain’s Economic Development Board said: “The fact that Bahrain’s trade with the GCC continues to grow strongly reflects the resilience of Bahrain’s supply chains. Bahrain offers the region’s best value operating costs, great connectivity, and advanced logistics infrastructure. Throughout 2020 and into 2021, Bahrain has been working closely with public and private sector partners to find creative solutions to keep business flowing across our borders.”
Some of the biggest exports to the UAE, aside from iron ore and aluminium products, included cheese and biscuits manufactured in Bahrain’s state of the art mega factories. Within the region, Bahrain is rapidly emerging as an FMCG leader, with global FMCG giants like Arla, Mondelez, Kimberly Clark and Reckitt Benckiser selecting the Kingdom as their regional manufacturing base and distribution hub.
The value of global imports increased by 4 percent, reaching US$3.52 billion during the first quarter of 2021. Exports of nationally produced products from Bahrain increased by 18 percent, reaching US$1.811 billion. The manufacturing sector is a key driver of the Kingdom’s economic diversification and a significant and consistent contributor to Bahrain’s economy accounting for 14.5 percent of the GDP.