Middle East PC sales indicate 5.6% year-on-year growth

Although desktop sales have declined by 0.8%, notebooks and PC Servers have grown at 59.1% and 12.3% respectively, according to IDC MENA.

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By  Vijaya Cherian Published  May 12, 2003

Despite the tense political situation in the Middle East, PC shipments in the region have grown to 324,894 units, indicating a 5.6% year-on-year growth, according to IDC Middle East and North Africa. Although desktop sales had declined by 0.8%, the analyst notes that notebooks and PC Servers have grown at 59.1% and 12.3% respectively.

In the UAE, PC sales enjoyed a 20.3% year-on-year growth, reaching 55,971 units in Q103. Expansion was seen across all form factors, with desktops growing at 20.8%, notebooks at 15.1% and PC Servers at 50.5%. In fact, anticipating supply shortage and higher airfreight costs, channels have stocked up PCs. The analyst house says that the rescheduled Dubai shopping festival has also impacted the market positively.

"Growth was mainly driven by an increased demand from the evolving small and medium-sized business segment", says Omar Shihab, research analyst, IDC Middle East & North Africa.

In contrast, the Saudi PC market exhibited a decline in shipments of 10.7% year-on-year during Q103 to total 71,949 units. IDC research indicates however, that this trend stems mainly from unusually large projects implemented in Q102, where several thousand desktop PCs were delivered to government institutions in the Kingdom. Consequently, sales of desktop PCs in Q103 declined just over 20%, while notebook PC shipments expanded by 47.4%. Deliveries of PC Servers in Saudi Arabia more than doubled In the first quarter of 2003, thanks mainly to large project implementations carried out for Saudi Aramco, as well as, ongoing replacement cycles for several customers in the country.

The analyst house says that the war in Iraq has had minimal effect on PC shipments in the region, at least during early Q203. “Latest estimates indicate that PC sales in the UAE and Saudi Arabia will expand by a modest 6.1% and 3.9% (year-on-year) in Q203, respectively. This growth is very much in line with IDC's initial forecasts –highlighting increased confidence levels among decision makers in both these markets", comments Jyoti Lalchandani, regional director, IDC MENA.

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