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Dubai economy strong: Projects $1.6-billion budget surplus

Dubai has projected a surplus of nearly $1.6 billion in its budget for fiscal 2006, which has been approved in a law issued by Shaikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

Expenditure is projected at Dh72.9 billion ($19.8 billion) against revenue of Dh78.7 billion ($21.4 billion), said a Wam report.

Dubai projected a budget surplus of nearly $1.1 billion last year.

Analysts welcomed the budget, saying it reflected Dubai’s booming economic growth.

The increase in revenues for 2006 is estimated at Dh22.7 billion, said the report.

The budget included two basic sectors, the public and economic.

Revenues of the public sector reached Dh19.8 billion, while its expenditures were estimated at Dh18.5 billion, with a surplus of Dh1.3 billion.

The economic sector’s revenues reached Dh58.9 billion, and its expenditures were estimated at Dh54.4 billion, with a surplus of Dh4.5 billion.

Last year, the total expenditure was projected at Dh52 billion against a net income of Dh56 billion, leaving a surplus of Dh4 billion.

The budget indicates the financial stability of Dubai and sent out a strong message to oil producing countries to diversify their economies. The transparency also sent out the right message to foreign investors about Dubai’s income.

’This budget indicates the continuing economic growth … The increased incomes show that the whole non-oil economy dominated by construction, manufacturing and banking sectors is doing really well,’ as per Dubai-based economist Dr Mohammad Al Asoomi.

’This data should help the country to attract more foreign direct investment. It should also give more confidence potential investors.

“The economy is doing well and the information contained in the budget presents that picture,’ he said, adding that the standard of living in Dubai has risen and the emirate’s GDP has enjoyed constant growth.

Since Dubai has no foreign debt, the surplus would probably go to government reserves, the experts felt. It will also give a further push to develop the non-oil sector. This year’s budget will also prove a real boost for businesses.

Source: Dubai City Guide

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