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Tue 28 May 2019 07:10 PM

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UAE Central Bank cuts economic growth forecasts for 2019

Central bank says UAE economy will expand only 2% in 2019, compared with a previous forecast of 3.5% published in March

UAE Central Bank cuts economic growth forecasts for 2019
The central bank singled out a deceleration in oil production as a drag on the economy.

Economic growth in OPEC’s third-biggest producer this year will fall far short of previous estimates and could undershoot the latest projections from the International Monetary Fund, according to the central bank of the UAE.

Gross domestic product will expand only 2% in 2019, compared with a previous forecast for 3.5% published in March, the central bank said in its annual report. 

The IMF sees a pickup to 2.8% from 1.7% last year, according to its April regional economic outlook. In a May 2 statement, the fund said “growth could exceed” 2% this year and approach 3% in 2020-21.

The oil economy is set to grow 2.7 percent, a downward revision from 3.7 percent, according to the central bank. The non-oil economy will expand an estimated 1.8 percent, versus an earlier forecast for 3.4 percent, it said.

The central bank singled out a deceleration in oil production as a drag on the economy, with crude output forecast at 3.1 million barrels a day in 2019 from an average of 3.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2018.

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies have been cutting supplies to counter a global supply glut and have suggested they may extend production cuts beyond June.

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