Bahrain Economic Forecast

Bahrain Economic Outlook

April 2, 2019

Available signs suggest the non-oil sector should have performed well in Q1. Non-oil exports were robust in the first two months of 2019, while private-sector credit growth was elevated in January. However, OPEC production cuts are likely constraining the oil sector. This follows an acceleration of GDP growth in Q4 2018 on the back of a rebound in mining and quarrying output. Meanwhile, in late-March, Bahrain LNG confirmed that the country’s first LNG import terminal will become operational in May, which should allow Bahrain to meet rising energy demand from industrial projects. In addition, the ALBA Line 6 expansion project is ramping up and should be completed in the coming quarters, which will likely provide a significant boost to domestic demand and the non-oil sector.

Bahrain Economic Growth

The construction sector should buttress growth this year, while reducing the fiscal deficit should boost business confidence. That being said, the tighter fiscal stance will limit government consumption, while the introduction of VAT could weigh on consumer purchasing power. Met the why particular analysts expect growth of 2.3% in 2019, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast, and 2.3% again 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 %Apr 12
Stock Market1,4450.04 %Apr 12

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