World Economy

Qatar Projects $7.7b Deficit

Qatar Projects $7.7b DeficitQatar Projects $7.7b Deficit

Qatar has projected a deficit of about $ 7.7 billion in its budget for 2018 for the third consecutive year because of falling energy prices, the country’s finance ministry said Wednesday, Alarabiya reported. The ministry said it expects spending in the budget to reach $55.4 billion, compared to $47.7 billion, slightly higher than previously estimated. The ministry has already forecast a deficit of $7.8 billion for this year’s budget. According to a statement released by the ministry, it had calculated oil income for next year at $45 a barrel, unchanged from 2017, despite the rise in crude oil prices. In 2016, after 15 years of surplus, Qatar suffered its first budget deficit of $12 billion. The spending on major projects is expected to reach $25 billion, roughly equivalent to spending in 2017. The rise in next year’s spending will mainly be due to the launch of new public facilities such as schools and hospitals, the ministry said, adding that the government would also focus on completing infrastructure for the 2022 soccer World Cup.

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