DIFC’s 20th Anniversary Takes Flight with Strong Contribution to Dubai’s Economy and Record-Breaking Annual Results

DUBAI, UAE, Feb. 15, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) continued to differentiate its position as the leading global financial centre for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region during 2023.

DIFC 2023 Annual Review

His Excellency Essa Kazim, Governor of DIFC, commented: “DIFC’s 2023 performance reflects the Centre’s standing as the leading global financial hub in the region, central to Dubai’s Economic Agenda (D33). Reflecting DIFC’s position as the primary choice for financial services related companies and innovation firms over the last 20 years, the results catapulted DIFC towards its Strategy 2030 targets which include doubling its contribution to Dubai GDP.”

Home to 5,523 active companies, with 1,451 new companies established in 2023, the highest number of new registrations annually in the Centre’s history, DIFC announced it is ahead of target to double its GDP contribution by 2030.

2023 combined revenues grew at their fastest levels since inception, approaching AED 1.3bn, 23 per cent higher than 2022. Operating profit reached AED 859mn, up 27 per cent. Reflecting the strength of DIFC’s financial position, total assets were AED 18bn, an increase of 18 per cent.

The total of financial and innovation related active companies now stand at 1,674. During the year, 316 FinTech and Innovation firms established a DIFC presence, taking the net total to 902. DIFC also continues to be a magnet for talent attraction. The total workforce grew to 41,597, a 15 per cent year-on-year increase, creating 5,514 new jobs.

DIFC built the MEASA region’s biggest hub for wealth and asset management of over 350 firms primarily from the GCC, Europe, UK and US. There are now 50 hedge fund related firms in DIFC’s wealth and asset management ecosystem. DIFC-based family business foundation structures also surged by 53 per cent to 443, reflecting a significant uptake during 2023.

DIFC owned and managed properties continue to be in high demand. At the end of 2023, occupancy stood at 99.5 per cent. DIFC Living, the Centre’s first residential offering, sold out within 48 hours of being launched.  

DIFC continued to support growth of the sustainable debt market within Nasdaq Dubai. The DIFC exchange emerged as the world’s largest ESG sukuk market with more than 60 per cent of US-denominated ESG sukuk and close to 50 per cent of all-currencies ESG sukuk.

Please visit: DIFC | 2023 Annual Review