Strong non-oil output will mitigate weakening growth in the hydrocarbons sector amid falling energy prices on the international markets, helping keep the UAE’s real GDP growth relatively strong at 4.0% in 2015 despite slowing from an estimated 4.6% expansion the year before, the central bank forecasts.
The oil sector will grow by a real 2.6% in 2015, braking from a 4.0% annual expansion last year. The non-oil GDP, however, will expand by 4.6% this year (slightly down from 4.8% in 2014). Growth will be underpinned by public spending on infrastructure projects financed by government-related entities and the mild recovery seen in oil price.
The UAE economy is also benefiting from resilient growth in other GCC countries, as well as in some emerging Asian economies, which import oil from the UAE.
The manufacturing sector (9% of GDP) is expected to grow by 3% on new investments in the free trade zones as well as in the mainland, according to the central bank. Construction (10.5% of GDP) is forecast to grow by 7% due to new housing and infrastructure developments as well as landmark tourism projects.
The wholesale and retail trade sector will grow by 5% this year whereas real estate and business services will contract 4.0%, the c-bank projects.
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