Trade surplus $2.73bn in Jan-Feb '10; exports up 45.2% on oil, imports fall 16.8%.
Gulf oil producer Oman's foreign trade surplus increased sevenfold to 1.051 billion rials ($2.73bn) in the first two months of this year compared to a year ago due to higher oil exports income, data showed on Wednesday.
The global crisis slashed oil output in Gulf Arab oil producing nations last year, trimming growth rates of the region's key players such as Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
Much smaller Oman was hit less because as a non-OPEC member it did not have to join oil output cuts required by the cartel.
The sultanate recorded a trade surplus of 148.6 million rials in January-February of last year.
Exports jumped 45 percent to 2.174 billion rials while imports fell nearly 17 percent to 1.122 billion rials compared to the January-February period of 2009, the economy ministry's data showed.
Crude exports, which account for over 58 percent of the overall exports, surged 87.4 percent in the first two months of 2010 in money terms compared to the same period last year.
Oman, which is producing around 850,000 barrels of oil a day, sold its crude at an average price of $76.5 a barrel in the first two months of 2010, up 69 percent from a year ago. ($1=.3850 Omani rial) (Reuters)For all the latest Oman news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.