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Survey ranks UAE third most optimistic nation

posted on 13/11/2008: 1883 views

Consumer confidence in UAE remains quite stable as the economy is driven by strong domestic growth particularly in the FMCG and retail sector, ranking UAE the third most optimistic nation according to a survey.

The Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence survey showed that out of 52 countries surveyed, UAE consumers ranked third most optimistic for their local job prospects and state of their personal finances.

Despite being affected by the current global conditions, consumers in the UAE and other developing markets are aware that their medium-to-long-term prospects remain strong, reveals the survey.

One in four UAE respondents identified increases in food prices as their number one concern in the next 6 months.

India and Denmark topped Nielsen's global consumer confidence index in the latest round of the survey, which polled 26,202 online consumers at the height of the global financial meltdown in late September 2008. UAE moved from forth position ranking six months ago.

Spending on clothes and saving on gas/electricity are UAE's top recessionary tactics, a report released by Nielsen survey indicates.

Despite being affected by the current global conditions, consumers in the UAE and other developing markets are aware that their medium-to-long-term prospects remain strong,” said Piyush Mathur, Regional Managing Director, Middle East, North Africa and Pakistan, The Nielsen Company.

According to Nielsen, the FMCG market in the UAE increased 26 per cent between August 2007 and August 2008. "This indicates high single-digit real growth even after inflation and population growth are factored in.”

Consumer confidence in the UAE dropped by only one index point in the past six months and more significantly recorded only a two-point decline in the last 12 months.

"While UAE consumers haven't entirely escaped the effects of an economic slowdown, it's clear that they have not suffered the serious consequences the global credit crunch has inflicted on consumers in other parts of the world,” said Mathur.

Many countries experienced double-digit declines in consumer confidence in the past year including the US, UK, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Malaysia.

"While 63 per cent of consumers think their country is currently in recession, in contrast and as further demonstration to their confidence, 60 per cent of UAE online consumers said they are not currently in a recession,” said Mathur.

Furthermore, among the 40 per cent of UAE consumers who believe they are currently in recession, 23 per cent believe it will be over within 12 months. Consumers in developing markets are significantly more optimistic that a global recession will not last more than a year, adds Mathur. – Khaleej Times


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