x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Abu Dhabi's Dh330bn spending plan to lift private sector

Abu Dhabi's plan to pump Dh330 billion into the economy over the next five years will help to bolster the private sector and financial markets, a senior government official said yesterday.

Abu Dhabi's plans to invest heavily on its infrastructure boosted share prices of property companies yesterday. Sammy Dallal / The National
Abu Dhabi's plans to invest heavily on its infrastructure boosted share prices of property companies yesterday. Sammy Dallal / The National

Abu Dhabi's plan to pump Dh330 billion (US$89.84bn) into the economy over the next five years will help to bolster the private sector and financial markets, a senior government official said yesterday.

The private sector will be one of the top beneficiaries of the investments, given that private companies are the "executive arms" of the projects linked to the cash, said Nasser Al Suwaidi, the chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development.

"The announcement of these allocations will also have the most beneficial effects on the markets, invigorating them and driving up growth."

And while more than 5,000 new jobs for Emiratis will be created during the year thanks to the investment, Mr Al Suwaidi said many more jobs would be generated by the private sector.

"The planned development expenditures and domestic transfers over five years are significant and equivalent to 41 per cent of Abu Dhabi's 2011 GDP," said Giyas Gokkent, the chief economist at National Bank of Abu Dhabi.

Mr Gokkent said the latest plan appeared to "strike a balance in the pace of development expenditure", while maintaining such spending at about 20 per cent of aggregate annual spending.

The statement from the Executive Council did not specify whether the spending would be on the government balance sheet or whether it was an additional fiscal stimulus.

"We don't know whether this is fiscal spending from the government or overall public-sector spending," said Mr Soussa.

 

tarnold@thenational.ae