Non-oil private sector records strong growth in September — Emirates NBD UAE PMI

Updated 09 October 2017
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Non-oil private sector records strong growth in September — Emirates NBD UAE PMI

Despite softening slightly in September, growth in the UAE’s non-oil private sector remained sharp and marked the strongest quarter recorded for two years, according to a new survey. The latest improvement in business conditions was driven by above-average expansions in both output and new orders. The UAE PMI survey reported that new business from abroad slipped back to contraction, indicating that the recovery was driven by domestic demand. On the price front, output charges fell, whilst input price inflation softened to a four-month low.
The survey, sponsored by Emirates NBD and produced by IHS Markit, contains original data collected from a monthly survey of business conditions in the UAE non-oil private sector.
Khatija Haque, head of MENA research at Emirates NBD, said: “Although the headline purchasing managers index eased slightly in September, the average reading for Q3 was the highest in two years, underpinned by strong growth in output and new work. The survey suggests that economic growth accelerated last quarter, and that domestic demand remains solid, despite relatively modest jobs growth.”
The headline seasonally adjusted Emirates NBD UAE Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) — a composite indicator designed to give an accurate overview of operating conditions in the non-oil private sector economy — eased from the 30-month high of 57.3 recorded in the preceding survey to 55.1 in September. Growth remained strong overall and steeper than the survey’s historical average. The average in Q3 2017 was 56.1, the strongest since Q3 2015 (56.3).
Firms in the non-oil private sector reported a sharp increase in output in September. The rate of growth was steep overall and above the series’ long-run average. The pace of expansion slowed from the four-month high registered in August.
Behind the latest rise in output requirements was strong underlying demand for goods and services produced in the UAE’s non-oil private sector, according to anecdotal evidence. A sharp expansion in incoming new work was signalled in September. However, survey data suggested that greater inflows of new work came from the domestic market instead of foreign sources, as indicated by the contraction in new export orders.
Employment levels continued to rise for the 17th month running in September. Companies in the UAE’s non-oil private sector reduced their output charges, according to the most recent survey data.


Ford trains 1,600 motorists in Mideast, Africa in 2018

Updated 11 December 2018
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Ford trains 1,600 motorists in Mideast, Africa in 2018

Ford Driving Skills for Life (DSFL) has wrapped up a successful 2018 having added programs in two new markets — Morocco and Madagascar — as well as having launched a women-only program in Saudi Arabia. The training program reached more than 1,600 inexperienced motorists in 10 cities around the Middle East and Africa.

Providing free training and instilling safe driving practices, the DSFL program offered an opportunity to gain experience in the four main primary driving skills: Hazard recognition, vehicle handling, speed management, and space management.

This year, Ford DSFL was run in the UAE (Dubai), Kenya (Nairobi), Uganda (Gulu Town), and four cities in South Africa (Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, Rustenburg, and Pretoria), while Casablanca welcomed Morocco’s first-ever DSFL for three days of training in October. 

Antananarivo in Madagascar also joined the DSFL family when it played host to 50 members of the media, and a train-the-trainer for distributor staff, in September, becoming the eighth market in sub-Saharan Africa alone to benefit from the introduction of Ford’s program.

In addition, on its return to Jeddah, Ford hosted the global debut of its DSFL for Her, a new customized version of Ford’s award-winning safe-driving initiative, helping to build confidence behind the wheel as participants in the Kingdom prepared to be among the first-ever women to be issued a driving license in the country.

The DSFL for Her course followed the landmark decision last year, as decreed by King Salman to lift the ban on females driving in Saudi Arabia.

“Safety continues to be a key priority for Ford, and providing campaigns such as DSFL can only help reduce the number of road accidents, and increase young drivers’ knowledge and confidence on the road,” said Jim Graham, global manager, Ford Driving Skills for Life. 

“Ford also made history in 2018 when it hosted the first-ever practical hands-on driving training for women in Saudi Arabia — DSFL for Her — specifically designed to accommodate Saudi females embarking on their first journey behind the wheel of a car. These are the kinds of occasions that make Ford exceptionally proud of the success DSFL has enjoyed this year, as the program continues its rapid expansion, and evolves to adapt to the needs of the markets in which it operates,” Graham added.

Ford Driving Skills for Life was established in 2003 by Ford Motor Company Fund, Governors Highway Safety Association, and a panel of safety experts to teach newly licensed drivers necessary skills beyond standard driver education programs. In 2008, the program expanded to Asia Pacific, and in 2013, Ford DSFL branched out into both Europe and the Middle East.

In 2017, the free program celebrated reaching the one-millionth newly licensed driver trained.