Budget deficit on the rise in Oman

Faced with a declining oil output, the Gulf state of Oman has adopted a budget for 2005 with a deficit of $1.4 billion.

The Gulf state's oil output has gradually been declining
The Gulf state's oil output has gradually been declining

The state ONA news agency on Saturday reported that revenues are projected at 3.14 riyals ($8.1 billion) and spending at 3.68 billion riyals ($9.5 billion).

National Economy Minister Ahmad al-Makki will unveil details of the new budget on Sunday.

The 2004 budget had projected a deficit of 500 million riyals ($1.3 billion).

Makki said last month that the country, which has been battling to halt a drop in oil production, is estimating a lower daily output of 750,000 barrels in 2005.


Estimated production for the year is 4.1% down on the figure for the first nine months of 2004 and 8.4% lower than output for all of 2003, the daily Times of Oman said last month.

Oman exported 197.4 million barrels of crude in the first nine months of 2004 – 5.5% lower than the same period of 2003.

Daily average production in 2003 was 819,500 barrels, down 8.7% from 898,000 a year before.

Oman is working to diversify its economy which is heavily dependent on oil. These efforts have included the development of gas resources and boosting industrialisation and tourism.

Source : News Agencies

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