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UAE nominal GDP up 1.5% to reach Dh928b

DUBAI – The nominal gross domestic product, or GDP, of the UAE is estimated to have reached Dh928 billion, up 1.5 per cent in 2010, while the real GDP grew 0.6 per cent to Dh517.6 billion in the same year, Global Research reveals in its latest Economic Review.

Refuelling the economic growth in 2010 was the hydrocarbon sector, accounting for 34 per cent of the GDP, up from 29 per cent in the previous year, the review shows. The difference between the nominal GDP, which is based on current prices, and real GDP is due to the inflation rate in market.

The UAE posted a trade balance of Dh173.3 billion in 2010, up from Dh154.7 in 2009. Total exports dropped to Dh669.5 billion from Dh705 billion while imports declined to Dh496.2 billion from Dh551.1 billion in 2009, the Global review shows.

UAE’s current account surplus surged to Dh75.2 billion from Dh22.8 billion, and now accounts for 8.1 per cent of the GDP, according to the review.

Global said all countries of the GCC are expecting to post growth in terms of real GDP for 2010. “The average growth of the region is expected to be 4.5 per cent reaching $567 billion, with Qatar leading the way at 16 per cent. Based on IMF projections, the region is predicted to post even stronger growth in 2011. The real GDP growth for the GCC in 2011 is projected to reach 5.9 per cent, with Qatar leading the way yet again at 20 per cent.”

The average barrel price of oil, which was $79.5 in 2010, is projected to rise to $87 in 2011, the review said. “Since the GCC is a predominately oil-driven region, we expect hydrocarbon revenues to witness strong growth during 2011 due to increasing oil prices,” it said.

The Middle East North Africa, or Mena, region, a major contributor to the world’s economy accounting for more than 30 per cent of the global oil supply.

The GDP of the region, in nominal terms grew by 12 per cent during 2010 to reach $2 trillion, while the population of the region grew by 2.3 per cent to reach 346 million, Global review said.

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