Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority (Dafza) and the Dubai government-owned Wasl Asset Management Group plan to develop a AED2.7bn ($735m) electronic commerce free zone close to Dubai International airport.

The proposed e-commerce hub, called Dubai CommerCity, will span a total area of 427,000 square meters in Dubai’s Umm Ramool area, Dafza said in a statement.

Dafza and Wasl did not specify specific timeline for the project, which is to be implemented in two phases.

The hub intends to provide a comprehensive system that supports the e-commerce sector and meets the current and future needs of logistics, electronic payments, IT solutions, customer services, and other related businesses.

It will feature three clusters including business,  logistics and social.

The business cluster will comprise 13 office buildings with a total leasable area of 108,000 square metres. The logistics cluster will consist of 84 logistics units with a leasable area of 68,000 square metres, while the social cluster will feature art galleries and luxury restaurants and cafes.

The entire development will be built with a provision for 4,000 parking slots.

 “[It will be] an ideal opportunity for major regional and international manufacturers to store their goods, products and spare parts in state-of-the-art warehouses… to be shipped later to the local markets,” the statement said.

Dubai CommerCity is envisaged to capitalise on the region’s rapidly growing e-commerce market, which is expected to reach $20bn by 2020.

According to Mohammed al-Zarooni, director general of Dafza, the new free zone will also complement Dafza’s achievements in attracting foreign direct investments into Dubai.