The gross domestic product (GDP) of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) grew by 5.2 per cent in 2010 to $2.92bn, meaning the centre now contributes 3.6 per cent of the emirate’s overall GDP.

The DIFC also announced that the number of companies registered in the free zone increased by 9.5 per cent to 773. There are 11,331 people employed in the centre, a slight decline on the previous year, although the DIFC did not reveal last year’s employment figures.

The DIFC was launched in 2004 as an attempt by Dubai to create a hub for the financial services in the region. It now hosts offices for a large number of international and regional banks and law firms.