Qatar’s current account balance swings into $2.24bn in Q1

By bne IntelliNews June 28, 2016

Plummeting foreign trade surplus, amid falling hydrocarbons exports, coupled with chronically negative services portfolio, pushed Qatar’s current account (CA) balance into a historic QAR8.23bn ($2.24bn) deficit in Q1 2016, from a QAR3.173bn surplus in the preceding quarter and QAR19.57bn surplus in Q1 2015, the central bank said in a preliminary estimate.

Sharply narrowing trade surplus amid falling hydrocarbons exports will push Qatar’s current account into a deficit (the first in more than a decade) of 5% of GDP in 2016 compared with a 4.5% of GDP surplus last year. The mild recovery in oil prices currently developing might, however, help address Qatar’s external position in H2.

Qatar’s CA surplus was dampened by 45% q/q and 63% y/y declines in foreign trade surplus to QAR19.27bn in Q1 2016 amid falling exports, mainly of hydrocarbons, that largely outweighed rising imports.

Qatar’s negative services income portfolio narrowed a marginal 1% q/q to QAR13.83bn in Q1. The income portfolio, however, reported a positive QAR493mn surplus in Q1, reversing a QAR2.627bn negative balance in Q4 last year. Current transfers remained at negative QAR14.2bn in Q1 albeit narrowing from a negative QAR15.172bn in Q4 2015.

The worsening parameters widened Qatar’s BoP gap by 75% q/q and 78% y/y to QAR2.61bn in Q1 2016.

The balance of payments recorded QAR20bn deficit in 2015 as a whole.

Related Articles

Ankara and Tehran join wave of anger directed at Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital

US President Donald Trump's December 6 announcement that his administration has decided to unilaterally recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital was described as “against international law” by ... more

Islamic State is finished declares Iran's President Rouhani

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on November 21 declared the end of the so-called Islamic State militant and terrorist group following decisive battles in Iraq and Syria. Stating that he wished to ... more

Turkey the loser as Baghdad rewards Iran with control of Kurdish oil exports

Iran is taking control of oil exports from Iraqi Kurdistan's giant Kirkuk field with Baghdad authorising the move as a reward for the Iranians' help in quelling the Kurds' late September push for ... more