Oman Economic Forecast

Oman Economic Outlook

March 10, 2020

The economy almost certainly slowed last year, as oil production and government spending decreased. Moreover, lending growth to the private sector halved compared to the previous year, likely hampering private consumption and fixed investment. On a somewhat brighter note, the merchandise trade deficit narrowed according to customs data, as imports decreased at a faster pace than exports. Turning to early this year, Oman has reported several cases of coronavirus in recent days, prompting the government to tighten international travel restrictions, which could weigh on tourism. Moreover, plunging oil prices could force the government to rein in spending to make up for lower-than-expected revenue. Meanwhile, Moody’s cut Oman’s credit rating to Ba2 from Ba1 on 5 March, changing the outlook to stable from negative.

Oman Economic Growth

The economy should accelerate this year, partly on the back of stronger fixed investment, which should benefit from an improved business climate. However, the impact of the coronavirus outbreak and poor public finances all weigh on the outlook. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists estimate growth of 2.0% in 2020, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast, and 2.6% in 2021.

Oman Economy Data

2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Population (million)3.73.84.04.14.2
GDP per capita (USD)21,78418,08016,31117,02018,947
GDP (USD bn)81.068.365.470.579.2
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)1.44.65.10.31.8
Consumption (annual variation in %)5.90.7-0.55.90.6
Investment (annual variation in %)2.4-1.216.5-4.3-5.1
Industrial Production (annual variation in %)0.25.14.8-1.62.6
Unemployment Rate3.93.53.33.13.1
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-3.4-17.6-21.1-13.9-8.7
Public Debt (% of GDP)4.915.532.746.453.4
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)1.00.11.11.60.9
Policy Interest Rate (%)1.001.001.191.952.93
Exchange Rate (vs USD)0.390.390.390.390.39
Current Account (% of GDP)5.2-16.0-19.1-15.6-5.5
Current Account Balance (USD bn)4.2-10.9-12.5-11.0-4.3
Trade Balance (USD billion)25.69.16.38.818.1
Exports (USD billion)53.535.627.532.841.7
Imports (USD billion)27.926.521.324.123.6
Exports (annual variation in %)-5.1-33.4-22.819.426.9
Imports (annual variation in %)-13.0-4.8-19.913.3-2.0
International Reserves (USD)16.317.520.216.117.4

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Oman Facts

Value Change Date
Exchange Rate0.390.06 %Dec 31

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