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Wed 26 Jan 2011 10:17 AM

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Qatar sees $2.5bn budget surplus for fiscal year

Qatari oil fetched $77.1 a barrel on average for the first nine months of the fiscal year

Qatar sees $2.5bn budget surplus for fiscal year
IMF VIEW: The $81bn Qatari economy will expand 20 percent this year, the IMF said in December (Getty Images)
Qatar sees $2.5bn budget surplus for fiscal year

Qatar expects a budget surplus of more than QR9bn ($2.5bn) for the current fiscal year following higher-than-expected oil prices.

Qatari oil fetched $77.1 a barrel on average for the first nine months of the fiscal year compared with a forecasted price of $55 a barrel, the official Qatari News Agency reported today, citing a Finance Ministry statement.

The fiscal year in the Gulf Arab state starts April 1.

Qatar’s development of LNG exports has driven its economic growth, which averaged 17 percent over the past five years, according to the International Monetary Fund.

The $81bn Qatari economy will expand 20 percent this year, the IMF said in December. The Gulf emirate is holder of the world’s third largest natural-gas reserves.

Crude, which tumbled to a four-year low of $32.40 a barrel in December 2008, traded above $86 a barrel today.

Soccer’s ruling body FIFA awarded the Persian Gulf country rights to host the 2022 World Cup, the most-watched sporting event. Qatar will spend about $64 billion to prepare for the event, Standard & Poor’s said.