Economic expectations for 2021 announced in Bahrain

The Bahraini Ministry of Finance and National Economy issued a statement revealing that a 1.2 billion dinars ($3.2 billion) deficit is expected in 2021, state news agency BNA said.

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The oil-dependent tiny Gulf state Bahrain has revealed economic expectations regarding this year. According to the statement, it is estimated that total expenditure would be around 3.57 billion dinars while the total revenues are expected to realize approximately 2.46 billion dinars. In Bahrain, the 2021-2022 budget has been set based on an expected oil price of $50 a barrel, BNA said. The expectation regarding economic growth is at 5% for this year, the state news agency added.

Last year, because of the COVID-19 pandemic’s economic effects, particularly on energy and tourism, and a sharp decrease in oil prices, Bahrain experienced one of its worst economic stagnations. According to International Monetary Fund (IMF) conjecture, the Gulf country’s economy contracted by 5.4%. Statistics show that public debt in Bahrain increased to 133% of the GDP last year, compared to 102% in 2019. Within this context, the Gulf state has been looking for ways to reduce government expenditures and increase revenues. Bahraini sovereign wealth fund Mumtalakat will double up its contributions in revenues.

On the other hand, Bahrain allocates about 4% of its GDP to military expenditures. Currently, this percentage has shown a declining tendency. In 2019, Bahrain’s military spending experienced an 8% drop compared to 2018. Considering last year’s economic constrictions, it can be estimated that this percentage should have dropped more than in 2019.

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