High oil prices and production boosted the UAE’s economy by more than $62 billion in 2011 in current prices and maintained its position as the second largest in the Middle East after Saudi Arabia, according to a Western report.
After contracting by around $44 billion in 2009 because of lower crude prices in the aftermath of the 2008 global fiscal distress, the country’s nominal GDP rebounded by about $30bn in 2011 before swelling by nearly $62.6bn in 2011, showed the report by the Institute for International Finance (IKIF).
From around $300.1bn in 2010, GDP soared to $362.7bn last year and is projected to gain pace to reach £384.7bn in 2012 before rising to an all-time high of around $389.1bnin 2013, IIF said.
The report showed the surge in 2011 was a result of a sharp rise in the hydrocarbon sector to nearly $156.7bn from $102bn in 2010.
It said the sector soared after Brent crude prices climbed to their highest average of $110.9 a barrel last year from $80.2 in 2010 while the UAE’s crude output increased to 2.55m bpd from 2.39mbpd.
The Washington-based IIF said higher prices and output boosted the country’s total exports to a record high of $289.7bn in 2011 from $229.4bnin 2010. Oil and gas exports jumped to $130.7bn from 85.8bn.
Despite a surge in the country’s imports to $213bnlast year from $170bn in 2010, the current account surplus swelled to its highest level of around $37.6bn in 2011 from $18bn in 2010, the report said.
The report showed higher current account boosted the UAE’s official reserves to $36bn from $32bn and the assets of its sovereign wealth funds to an all-time high of $520bn from $462bn. It projected those assets to hit a new record of $578bn this year and $630bn in 2913.