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Sun 18 Mar 2007 03:05 PM

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UAE oil exports at record high

The value of UAE crude oil exports rose 11.3% in 2006 to a record $48.5bn, according to ministry data.

The value of United Arab Emirates' crude oil exports rose 11.3% in 2006 to a record 178 billion dirhams ($48.5 billion), economy ministry data showed on Sunday.

The average price of UAE crudes climbed 21.5% to $65 per barrel, compared with $53.50 per barrel in 2005, the ministry said.

Oil and gas account for around 26% of the gross domestic product in the UAE, a federation of the seven emirates including Dubai, the region's trade and tourism hub.

A near tripling of international oil prices in the five years to July has driven economic growth in the UAE, where GDP expanded 8.9% last year.

The value of last year's oil exports was almost three times as high as the figure for 2002 and the highest on record, economy ministry data showed.

Economic growth will slow to 7% in 2007, its slowest pace since 2002, as oil prices fall off last year's record highs, National Bank of Abu Dhabi (NBAD) said in a research note earlier this month.

NBAD expects the average price for benchmark Dubai spot crude to remain around $55 per barrel in 2007, down from $60 in 2006, the note said.

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