• Government determined to carry out healthcare, social and infrastructure projects
  • Budget shows limited impact of low oil prices in the global market

The UAE cabinet has approved a budget of AED48.5bn ($13.2bn) for 2016 on 25 October, according to a report by the UAE National News Agency (WAM).

This budget is 1.22 per cent lower compared to the 2015 budget of AED49.1bn.

The reduction in budget is expected given the low oil prices and government revenues. The degree of the budget reduction, however, is small compared to what might have been expected.

UAE’s Economy Minister Sultan bin Saeed al-Mansouri said the budget shows that low global oil prices has only had a limited impact on the UAE federal government’s future plans.

The oil and gas sector comprises about 30 per cent of the UAE gross domestic product (GDP), and is less susceptible, compared to some of its GCC neighbours, to the fluctuation in global oil prices.

Al-Mansouri further said that the UAE leadership is “determined to continue to carry out ambitious projects in vital sectors like healthcare, social development, economic development, protection of the environment, culture and infrastructure, in line with the UAE Vision 2021.”

The UAE Vision 2021 comprises the country’s long-term economic development plans which include establishing world-class healthcare and environmental sustainability, among others.