Bahrain Economic Forecast

Bahrain Economic Outlook

January 8, 2019

Economic growth moderated in the third quarter, due to a contraction in the mining and quarrying sector and softer manufacturing growth. However, higher oil prices cushioned the slowdown. Looking at the fourth quarter, the large fall in oil prices likely depressed the mining and quarrying sector and dragged on the economy’s performance. Encouragingly, the recently secured financial aid package from the Gulf Cooperation Council motivated Moody’s to upgrade Bahrain’s credit rating outlook from negative to stable in December. Also, in December, Sheikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa was appointed as the new finance minister following parliamentary elections. Moreover, the value-added tax introduced on 1 January will help narrow the fiscal deficit.

Bahrain Economic Growth

The construction sector should keep the economy afloat this year, while the financial aid package and subsequent economic reforms should boost business confidence. However, fiscal consolidation will likely hurt domestic demand in the short-term. Met the why particular panelists expect GDP to grow 2.6% in 2019, down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 2.4% in 2020.

Bahrain Economy Data

20132014201520162017
Population (million)1.31.31.41.41.5
GDP per capita (USD)25,90025,31922,65822,49824,232
GDP (USD bn)32.533.331.132.135.2
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)5.44.42.93.23.9
Consumption (annual variation in %)9.9-0.71.90.5-  
Investment (annual variation in %)16.95.9-8.511.0-  
Unemployment Rate4.34.14.24.3-  
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-3.3-3.6-13.0-13.6-11.0
Public Debt (% of GDP)41.342.060.372.179.8
Money (annual variation in %)8.26.52.91.24.2
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)3.22.71.82.81.4
Policy Interest Rate (%)0.500.500.751.001.75
Exchange Rate (vs USD)0.380.380.380.380.38
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)0.380.380.380.380.38
Current Account (% of GDP)7.44.6-2.4-4.6-3.9
Current Account Balance (USD bn)2.41.5-0.8-1.5-1.4
Trade Balance (USD billion)4.33.70.8-0.8-0.7
Exports (USD billion)25.523.416.512.815.3
Imports (USD billion)21.219.715.713.616.0
Exports (annual variation in %)11.9-8.2-29.6-22.720.2
Imports (annual variation in %)8.0-7.0-20.6-13.518.3
International Reserves (USD)5.05.83.12.22.3

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Bahrain Facts

ValueChangeDate
Exchange Rate0.380.03 %Jan 30
Stock Market1,3920.04 %Jan 30

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