UAE maritime is a thriving industry with great developments in shipbuilding as the UAE has become one of the main trading hubs. In recent years an increasing number of foreign companies has established offices in the country. The full range of services are available, from imports and exports of goods, through to ship building, repair and refueling. There are even free zones established specifically for the maritime industry, namely Dubai Maritime City and Hamriya Free Zone.

The industry is strengthened by the presence of the UAE Shipping Association, whose aim is to develop partnerships between suppliers and buyers and interact with government authorities.

The port of Jebel Ali is the largest man-made harbor in the world and can accommodate any size ship. It currently has a capacity of 14m TEU however when its current expansion is completed, its capacity will reach 19m TEU. It will also have the capability to handle 10 of the mega container ships that carry 18,000 container boxes.

Big Norwegian companies such as Wilhelmsen draw in expertise and technologies from Norway from the smaller companies.