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U.S.-United Arab Emirates Trade Facts

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The UAE is a federation of seven emirates (Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman, Umm Al-Qaiwain, Fujairah, and Ras Al-Khaimah). The individual emirates founded the UAE in December 1971. Over the last 38 years, the UAE has developed into the second largest economy in the Arab world.

Despite possessing substantial petroleum reserves, the UAE has pursued free market, trade liberalizing policies to diversify its economy away from a dependence on fossil fuel. Rapid growth in the nonoil economy reduced oil's share of GDP from 60 percent in 1980 to 35.8 percent in nominal terms in 2007. The U.S. and UAE entered into a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) in 2004, which established a formal dialogue to promote increased trade and investment between the two countries.

United Arab Emirates is currently our 26th largest goods trading partner with $25.8 billion in total (two way) goods trade during 2016. Goods exports totaled $22.4 billion; goods imports totaled $3.4 billion. The U.S. goods trade surplus with United Arab Emirates was $19.0 billion in 2016.

According to the Department of Commerce, U.S. exports of Goods to United Arab Emirates supported an estimated 104 thousand jobs in 2015 (latest data available).

Exports

  • United Arab Emirates was the United States' 16th largest goods export market in 2016.

  • U.S. goods exports to United Arab Emirates in 2016 were $22.4 billion, down 2.6% ($604 million) from 2015 but up 118.0% from 2006.  U.S. exports to United Arab Emirates account for 1.5% of overall U.S. exports in 2016.

  • U.S. total exports of agricultural products to United Arab Emirates totaled $1.2 billion in 2016, our 22th largest agricultural export market. Leading domestic export categories include: tree nuts ($310 million), hay ($110 million), snack foods nesoi ($81 million), prepared food ($75 million), and beef & beef products ($66 million).

  • U.S. total exports of agricultural products to United Arab Emirates totaled $1.2 billion in 2016, our 23rd largest agricultural export market. 

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Imports

  • United Arab Emirates was the United States' 54th largest supplier of goods imports in 2016.

  • Khaki Boutique LOFT Taylor Shorts Ann U.S. goods imports from United Arab Emirates totaled $3.4 billion in 2016, up 36.5% ($902 million) from 2015, and up 143.3% from 2006.  

  • The top import categories (2-digit HS) in 2016 were: aluminum ($1.0 billion), special other (returns) ($810 million), mineral fuels ($324 million), precious metal and stone (diamonds) ($290 million), and iron and steel products ($167 million).

  • Boutique LOFT Shorts Taylor Ann Khaki U.S. total imports of agricultural products from United Arab Emirates totaled $29 million in 2016. Leading categories include: essential oils ($6 million), processed fruit & vegetables ($5 million), snack foods ($4 million), tea, incl herb ($3 million), and spices ($1 million).

Trade Balance

  • Shorts Boutique Taylor Ann LOFT Khaki The U.S. goods trade surplus with United Arab Emirates was $19.0 billion in 2016, a 7.3% decrease ($1.5 billion) over 2015.

Investment

  • U.S. foreign direct investment (FDI) in United Arab Emirates (stock) was $13.4 billion in 2016, a 14.5% decrease from 2015. U.S. direct investment in United Arab Emirates is led by mining, manufacturing, and wholesale trade.

  • United Arab Emirates's FDI in the United States (stock) was $2.8 billion in 2016, up 3.2% from 2015. The distribution of United Arab Emirates's FDI in the United States is not available.

  • Sales of services in United Arab Emirates by majority U.S.-owned affiliates were $8.5 billion in 2014 (latest data available), while sales of services in the United States by majority United Arab Emirates-owned firms were $3.3 billion.

NOTE: No services trade data with United Arab Emirates are available. 

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