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MEDIA / Blog / UAE Economy Expected to Grow between 3 – 3.5% in 2016 - 13 DECEMBER 2015
During the two-day UAE Economic Outlook 2016 Conference, the UAE Minister of Economy Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri stated that the UAE economy is expected to grow between 3 – 3.5% in 2016, similar to the rate that the UAE has projected in 2015 (3.5% GDP).

The minister remained optimistic about the country’s economic growth, as he told reporters that, as in 2015, the rate will depend on whether the UAE continues to have minimum increase in oil prices. He added: “We have faced similar circumstances and challenges before also. We were optimistic and have dealt with those challenges professionally at the level of the government, at the level of leadership, local government and the private sector and we managed the situation to continue our growth.”

Rashed Ali Abdulla Al Zaabi, executive director of planning and statistics at Abu Dhabi’s Department of Economic Development agreed on the statement by adding: “Next year’s growth will be affected by oil prices. After the recent Opec meeting, there will be some impact”. Despite this, Al Zaabi is positive about the country’s growth rate as he pointed out that Abu Dhabi has the capability to absorb the financial shock due to oil prices, and is not afraid of diminishing oil resources.

The minister added that the UAE has managed to maintain its growth due to its flexibility and economic diversification that it has achieved in recent years. In addition, the government has issued new rules and regulations to help further enhance the business environment.

Al Zaabi also commented that the UAE’s oil dominated environment is diversifying and by 2013 only 30% of the contribution to the country’s environment will come from the oil and gas sector as the opening up of new businesses is progressively growing. More precisely, he pointed out that the government’s emphasis on innovation will open business opportunities as DH300 billion would be invested in the sector.  Moreover, he projected that revenues coming from the non-oil economy will grow 3.3 per cent in 2016.

Source: Haseeb Halder, Abu Dhabi, Khaleej Times, 9 December 2015      

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