In common with other recent budgets, public services and infrastructure projects receive the lion’s share of the increased spending. The 2006/07 allocation rises by 56.5 per cent to QR 10,500 million ($2,885 million). Overall, expenditure on major public projects is set to expand by 70.5 per cent to QR 20,000 million ($5,495 million), with education and social services also significant beneficiaries.

The sharp rise in budgeted revenue is primarily explained by a 33.3 per cent increase in the assumed oil price to $36 a barrel, from $27 a barrel in 2005/06. However, with prices widely expected to remain above $50 a barrel throughout the year, this still remains conservative and another surplus considerably above the government’s projection is expected. Preliminary estimates for the surplus in the 2005/06 financial year indicate a windfall of some QR 18,000 million ($4,945 million).