Middle East sea freight industry has seen explosive growth over the last decade. Capitalizing on this, contracts for new ships ranging from millions to billions of dollars are being entered into.

Need to set up an association of this growing community of ship owners in the region was felt and accordingly discussions were started in August 2005 at the instance and guidance of DP World and Dubai Maritime City.

The vision of this association is to promote and protect the interests of ship owners and shipping community of the UAE.

An association titled The UAE Ship Owners Association (UAESOA) was registered with the Department of Economic Development in the same month with D & K Shipping, Emarat Maritime, Emirates Trading Agency, The Transworld Group and Gulf Energy Maritime as the core group. The Association subsequently was renamed as the UAE Shipping Association.

The launch of the Association was formally done on 13th May 2007 at a reception held at DIFC. This reception was well attended by ship owners as well as officials from Dubai Dry Docks, Dubai World, Dubai Maritime City and representatives from major financial institutions.