Qatar’s budget for 2017 projects that it will post its second consecutive deficit, although it expects this to fall $8.4bn to $7.8bn. But a conservative oil price assumption means next year’s deficit may actually be as low as $3.8bn.

Qatar is banking on revenue growth of 14.5% in real terms in 2017 to drive its budget deficit down by 40% to QR28.3bn ($7.8bn at $1=QR3.64) next year. MEES calculates that Qatar will rack up a whopping QR59.1bn ($16.2bn) deficit this year despite cutting expenditure by 21%, as revenues collapsed by 49%. The resultant deficit will be Qatar’s first in 15 years and represents a QR80bn ($22bn) swing from a QR21.3bn ($5.9bn) surplus last year. (CONTINUED - 1158 WORDS)