Top Middle Eastern Export Countries

Nataz City, Iran

Nataz City, Iran

Exports from countries in the Middle East totaled US$1.293 trillion for 2018. That dollar amount reflects a -12.2% decline since 2014 when shipments for the Middle East aggregation totaled an estimated $1.474 trillion. Year over year, the value of exports from the Middle East increased by 16% from 2017 to 2018.

In comparison, global exports from all countries worldwide equaled $19.347 trillion in 2018, rising 2.4% in value since 2014 and accelerating by 10.2% from 2017 to 2018. For financial context, consider that Mideast exports represent an estimated 6.7% of total global exports from all countries during 2018.

Based on statistics from the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook Database, the total Gross Domestic Product for Middle Eastern countries amounted to an estimated $10.106 trillion in 2018 on a Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) basis. Therefore, exported products accounted for roughly 12.8% of the Middle East’s total economic output in terms of GDP per PPP for 2018.

Given the Middle East’s estimated population of about 411.8 million people, the total $1.474 trillion in 2018 Middle Eastern exports translates to approximately $2,700 per person living in the Mideast.

Please note that Turkey and Egypt have been included with other Middle East countries for the purpose of this analysis. This is due to the fact that, in accordance with our World Trade Organization statistical sources, Turkey is grouped with Asian nations although Egypt is listed under Africa.


Top Middle Eastern Export Countries

Below are Middle Eastern export countries presented in the order of highest dollar value for 2018 global shipments. Also shown is each country’s overall share of Middle Eastern exports.

RankExporter2018 Exports%Continent TotalSince 2014
1.United Arab Emirates$316,922,502,00024.5%-16.7%
2.Saudi Arabia$294,535,553,00022.8%-13.9%

On a year-over-year basis, the fastest-growing Mideast exporters from 2017 to 2018 were Oman (up 44.5%), Iraq (up 40.7%), Saudi Arabia (up 33.8%), Kuwait (up 30.8%) then Qatar (up 30.2%).

There were six decliners year over year: Yemen (down -36.8%), Syria (down -35.9%), Palestine (down -86.5%), United Arab Emirates (down -16.7%), Israel (down -10.2%) and Jordan (down -7.5%).

See also Saudi Arabia’s Top 10 Exports and Turkey’s Top 10 Exports

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Databases (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on August 19, 2019

The World Factbook, Field Listing: Exports. Accessed on August 19, 2019

The World Factbook, Middle East: Syria, Economy: GDP (purchasing power parity). Accessed on August 19, 2019

International Trade Centre, Trade Map. Accessed on August 19, 2019

Wikipedia, List of Middle East countries by population. Accessed on August 19, 2019