Infra projects to drive Qatar’s growth in 2019 Feb 08, 2019 0 1569 12345 Satyendra Pathak Doha Higher hydrocarbon production, government spending and infrastructure projects will support Qatar’s economic growth in 2019, FocusEconomics has said in its latest report.According to The FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast Middle East and North Africa (MENA) report for February, Qatar’s economy continued to grow at a moderate pace in the fourth quarter. “The annual trade surplus increased throughout the fourth quarter of 2018 thanks to a surge in exports, on higher oil prices in the early part of the quarter and strong gas exports throughout the period. Moreover, private credit growth surged that bodes well for the non-oil sector,” the report said.Looking ahead to the first quarter of 2019, the report said, Qatar’s withdrawal from OPEC frees it from production curbs that should support the oil sector somewhat. FocusEconomics panellists forecast 2.7 percent growth in 2019 and 2.9 percent in 2020.“Prices fell 0.3 percent year-on-year in December. Our panelists expect inflation to average 1.5 percent in 2019 and 2.4 percent 2020,” the report said.It has also indicated that inflation would remain below 2.5 percent for the next three years.The GDP per capita in Qatar will also increase from $61,680 in 2018 to $63,482 in 2019, the report said adding that it would continue to rise further and reach up to $76,638 in 2023, the report said.According to the annual data released as part of the report, the overnight lending rate in the country would continue to rise from the current level and reach up to 5.67 percent in 2020. Qatari riyal will continue to be pegged at $3.64 in the years to come, the report said. There would be a sustained increase in both imports and exports from Qatar. While the exports from the country is expected to rise up to $104.7 billion in 2023, the report said, imports would increase up to $50.4 billion in the same year. FocusEconomics, the leading provider of economic analysis, has also forecast that Qatar’s trade balance would rise from $50.3 billion in 2018 to $54.4 billion in 2023. The report has also projected that Qatar’s fiscal deficit turned into fiscal surplus of 0.4 percent of the total GDP in 2018. The percentage of fiscal surplus would rise up to 3.2 percent in 2022, the report added.Highlighting the economic strengths of the country, the report said, “Net external creditor due to large stock of foreign assets and world’s third largest gas reserves are the biggest strengths of the Qatari economy.”On a broader level, FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists expect economies in the MENA region to expand 1.9 percent in 2019, which is down 0.2 percentage points from last month’s estimate, and 2.8 percent in 2020.“Oil production cuts, tighter financial conditions and mounting geopolitical threats are trimming MENA’s outlook for 2019,” the report said. Pages 12 RELATED ARTICLES BoE sees weakest UK outlook since 2009 on Brexit Feb 08, 2019 0 293 US banks BB&T and SunTrust announce $66 billion merger Feb 08, 2019 0 402 India cbank surprises with interest rate cut Feb 08, 2019 0 274 Wall St slides on trade war fears Reuters new york US stocks sank over 1 percent on Thursday on fears that the United States and China would not be able to reach a trade deal with less than a month left in their fragile truce, adding to worries about a slowdown .. Apple rolls out fix for FaceTime privacy bug Apple on Thursday released a fix for a software bug that had let iPhone users hear audio from users who had not yet accepted a video call. The bug was discovered last month by US teenager Grant Thompson, who along with his .. Oil falls over 2% as US inventories weigh on supply outlook Reuters NEW YORK Oil fell more than 2 percent on Thursday as the market confronted concerns that global demand growth would lag in the coming year. A rebound from late December lows seemed to stall amid worries that a trade .. Ford investing $1 billion, adding 500 jobs in Chicago Ford Motor Co said on Thursday it is investing more than $1 billion in its Chicago operations and adding 500 jobs as it prepares to launch three new SUVs this year and end production of the Taurus. Ford said it is building a new ..