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Wed 27 Jan 2010 11:10 AM

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Yemen oil income falls by over half in 2009

Senior cenbank official reveals total oil income down to $2bn last year from $4.4bn in 2008.

Yemen’s oil income fell by over half last year, according to one of the country’s senior central bank officials.

Ibrahim Al Nahari, sub-governor for foreign banking operations, told Reuters that oil income had fallen to $2bn in 2009, from $4.4bn in 2008, a year-on-year plummet of 55.4 percent.

While oil revenue accounts for 75 percent of the Arab state’s budget, Al Nahari was confident that increased income from gas would keep the country’s economy on track. He added that he also thought 2010 would see oil revenues recover.

Yemen is one of the poorest countries in the Middle East, with a GDP per capita of $2,500, compared to $41,800 in the UAE and $121,400 in Qatar.

Earlier this month, the World Bank was still forecasting that Yemen would grow by 3.1 percent this year and by 3.7 percent in 2011.

However, terrorism in the country was recently identified as the biggest risk to Gulf economies in 2010, according to a new report from the RiskMap business consultancy.

“Two significant events – the attempted assassination of Saudi Arabia’s Prince Mohammed Bin Nayef and the Detroit airline bomb plot – show increased boldness and an innovative new techniques,” said Control Risks analyst Marie Bos.

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