The rate of expansion of Bahrain’s non-oil economy increased upto 4.8 percent in the initial nine months of 2017, outperforming last expectations, as per the Bahrain Economic Development Board’s (EDB) Bahrain Economic Quarterly.
As per figures mentioned in the report, 2017’s non-oil growth is predicted to expand the 4 percent noted in 2016.
The total economies expansion reached a pace of 3.6 percent for the initial three quarters of the year, when compared to 3.2 percent during 2016 as a whole. The report mentions that the rate of expansion makes Bahrain’s economy the quickest expanding in the GCC.
Chief Economic Advisor of the Bahrain EDB, Dr Jarmo Kotilaine stated, “Bahrain’s economy continues to deliver at the upper end of growth expectations thanks to a combination of robust structural and countercyclical drivers.”
He also said, “We expect this positive dynamic to continue into 2018 as the regional environment becomes more supportive of growth and as the diversified economy continues to expand, supported by an unprecedented investment pipeline.”
As per Kotilaine, Bahrain has progressively undertaken attempts to take advantage of expanding growth drivers, like fintech – most remarkably via the Bahrain fintech Bay – and ICT infrastructure.
He even added, “As growth becomes increasingly underpinned by improvements in productivity, Bahrain’s investment in infrastructure, regulatory reform and development of human capital will play a vital role in ensuring long-term, sustainable prosperity and expansion.”
Remarkably, Bahrain’s non-oil growth is almost completely operated by the private sector, which has resulted in broad-based, strong performances in sectors including hospitality, personal, F&B, social, and financial services and communications, all of which recorded over 6 percent year-on-year real expansion during the first nine months of 2017.
In addition, the report mentions that non-oil growth has been increased by a number of large-scale infrastructure investments, inspite subdued oil prices and low government spending expansion.
Bahrain’s total investment pipeline is calculated to have raised by about 20 percent in 2017, led by $32 billion worth of ‘priority’ projects like an airport modernisation project and expansion of the Alba aluminum smelter.
Throughout 2017, the worth of tendered projects as part of the GCC Development Fund increased from $3.9 billion to about $4.1 billion, with the cumulative amount of funds disbursed increasing from $751 million in Q4 2016 to $1.4 billion in the same quarter of 2017.
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