High crude prices allied with an increase in non-oil export earnings to boost the UAE's total budget revenues to their highest level of Dh494 billion in 2012, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
The 2012 income was nearly 12.5 per cent above the 2011 revenue of about Dh439.6 billion, the Washington-based Fund said in a report following a visit to the UAE by IMF team to prepare for its 2013 IV article on the country.
A breakdown showed oil export earnings surged to a record high of around Dh395.9 billion in 2012 from nearly Dh361.7 billion in 2011. Non-hydrocarbon revenue also swelled to Dh98.5 billion from Dh77.9 billion and are projected to continue rising to reach Dh105.3 billion in 2013 and Dh114 billion in 2014.
The increase in the UAE's revenue last year followed a surge in crude oil prices to their highest average of $112 a barrel while the country's oil output also remained at one of its highest levels of 2.6 million barrels per day.
The IMF report showed the total value of the UAE's exports of crude oil, condensates and gas hit an all-time high of $112 billion in 2012 compared with $109.6 billion in 2011. The report forecast revenue to slip to $108 billion in 2013 and continue its decline to nearly $101 billion in 2014 and $97 billion in 2015.
The IMF did not specify the UAE's fiscal balance in 2012 but in 2011, the consolidated fiscal account (CFA) recorded a surplus of Dh71.5 billion although public expenditure remained at one of its highest levels.
The UAE, the second largest Arab economy, suffered from a CFA deficit of around Dh29.5 billion in 2010 as a result of lower oil prices and a sharp rise in spending as part of fiscal stimulus measures adopted by the government in the wake of the 2008 global financial distress.
But a surge of nearly 50 per cent in oil prices allowed the country to rebound into a surplus in 2011, accounting for nearly 5.3 per cent of GDP, according to the Washington-based Institute of International Finance (IIF). The UAE CFA includes the federal budget and public spending by each of the seven emirates.
Source: The Gulf Today