Oman’s budget deficit has dropped to the lowest level in five years, bolstered by a rise in government revenues and a slight decrease in spending, according to figures released by the sultanate’s National Centre for Statistics and Information (NSCI).
Oman’s budget deficit declined by 53 percent to RO 660.6 million ($1.71mn) in the first half of 2019, compared to RO 1.4 billion ($3.63bn) during the same time last year.
Largely due to higher revenues from oil, gas and corporate tax, total government revenues rose 11.4 percent to RO 5.515 billion ($14.32bn) between January and June, up from RO 4.948 billion ($12.85bn) during the first half of 2018.
Over the same time period, net oil revenues grew 5 percent to RO 3.074 billion ($7.98bn), compared to RO 2.929 billion ($7.6bn) last year. Gas revenues went up 9.3 percent to RO 939.6 million ($2.4bn).
Total public expenditure decreased 2.8 percent to RO 6.174 billion, from RO 6.353 billion a year ago. This was largely due to a 13.5 percent reduction in investment expenditure.
Oman’s state budget for this year – which assumes an average oil price of $58 per barrel – projects a deficit of RO 2.8 billion ($7.27bn) for the entirety of 2019.