MENA Country Report United Arab Emirates 2017

Reporte por país

  • United Arab Emirates
  • Agricultura,
  • Automoción/Transporte,

03 ago 2017

So far the UAE has weathered the global oil price slump relatively well, supported by its increasingly diversified economy and ample foreign assets.

MENA UAE 2017 key indicators
MENA UAE 2017 Industries performance forecast

Political situation

Head of state: President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan (since November 2004), Emir of Abu Dhabi 

Head of government: Vice President and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (since December 2006), Emir of Dubai

Government type: Federation of seven Emirates: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Al Fujayrah, Dubai, Ra's al-Khaymah, Umm al-Qaywayn, and Sharjah 

Population: 9.9 million (est.) - immigrants make up more than 80% of the total population

The internal political situation remains stable

Domestic politics are influenced considerably by the ruling families and traditional tribal structures. Political parties or trade unions are not permitted and opposition is virtually non-existent. The Federal National Council (FNC) as a legislative body has only an advisory role.

The UAE will maintain an assertive foreign policy in order to increase its regional influence in light of continued insecurity in the Middle East. The country is part of the alliance against the Islamic State (IS), and as such it has launched air strikes against IS in Syria and Libya. At the same time, its armed forces are part of the Saudi-led campaign against Houthi rebels in Yemen.

The UAE was also one of the initiators (together with Saudi Arabia) to impose sanctions on Qatar, for suspecting the country of sponsoring terrorism. Diplomatic ties and transport links have been cut, and Qatari nationals have been asked to leave the UAE. 

Economic situation

A modest rebound is underway

MENA UAE 2017 Real GDP growth

The UAE has weathered the global oil price slump relatively well, supported by its increasingly diversified economy, a stable political environment and ample foreign assets. However, in 2016 economic growth slowed down to 3.0%, amid declining liquidity in the banking sector and weaker business sentiment.

Since Q4 of 2015 many businesses in the IT, consumer durables, food, metals, steel and construction sectors have faced increasing troubles. Commodity price volatility (especially steel, metals, food commodities) in 2015 and 2016 has negatively impacted various traders and distributors, who had to face liquidity/cash flow issues and have either delayed payments to suppliers or, in some cases, just shut down their businesses.

With the gradual recovery of the oil price in the course of 2016 economic confidence and appetite for investment projects have gradually improved again, especially in the transport, tourism and construction sectors. Increased infrastructure spending in the run-up to the World Expo 2020 event hosted in Dubai should additionally stimulate economic activity. However, the situation will remain difficult in 2017 for the troubled sectors mentioned above, as domestic bank lending conditions remain tight, and 2017 GDP growth is likely to be affected by the UAE’s commitment to cut oil production in line with an November 2016 OPEC agreement. At last, a 3.4% rebound in GDP growth is expected in 2018.

MENA UAE 2017 fiscal balance

The budget deficit is expected to decrease to around 6.5% in 2017, due to cuts in public spending/subsidies and the modest oil price recovery. The focus remains on shifting towards raising non-oil revenues (e.g. the planned introduction of a value-added tax of 5% in January 2018). At the same time, some easing of austerity is on-going with increasing social support (in order to stem any discontent after previous subsidy cuts) and the stepping up of new development projects.

The current account surplus shrank from 13.5% of GDP in 2014 to less than 4% in 2016, and is expected to recover only gradually amid still low oil prices. Maintaining the currency peg of the dirham to the strong USD could hamper competitiveness of non-oil sectors and hinder diversification efforts (the real effective exchange rate has appreciated by about 20% since mid-2014). However, there is little risk of the dirham being de-pegged, as large foreign currency assets provide strong support.

MENA UAE 2017 Current account

Despite progress in debt restructuring on part of government related entities, a high gross external debt level of USD 235 billion (62% of GDP) remains (a legacy from the property market crisis in 2008/2009). Although weak domestic liquidity and higher US interest rates have increased short-term roll-over risks, the UAE has more than sufficient reserves to cover the substantial financing needs. In addition, it can fall back on large Sovereign Wealth Funds, which have an estimated total value of over USD 1.2 trillion. Moreover, the federal authorities are preparing legislation that will enable them to access international capital markets; a right that is currently reserved for individual emirates only.

Currently non-oil sectors account for 70% of the UAE´s total GDP, and the government´s strategy is to further diversify the economy away from oil in order to ultimately establish a knowledge-driven economy in the long-term. There is still scope for further cementing UAE’s role as commercial hub, for example by relaxing constraints on foreign direct investment and easing access to finance for small and medium-sized enterprises. The introduction of a long-awaited bankruptcy law end of 2016, which facilitates the debt restructuring process, is considered to be a step in the right direction.




Documentos relacionados

Disclaimer y Buró de Entidades Financieras

Este informe se presenta, con fines de información únicamente y no está pensada como una recomendación en cuanto a las transacciones particulares, inversiones o estrategias en modo alguno a cualquier lector. Los lectores deben tomar sus propias decisiones independientes, comerciales o de cualquier otro tipo, con respecto a la información proporcionada. Aunque hemos hecho todo lo posible para garantizar que la información contenida en este informe sea obtenida de fuentes confiables, Atradius no es responsable por los errores u omisiones, o por los resultados obtenidos del uso de esta información. En ningún caso Atradius, sus corporaciones o empresas relacionadas, afiliadas y subsidiarias, ni los socios, agentes o empleados, serán responsables por cualquier decisión o medida adoptada con base en la información en este informe, o por ningún daño directo, indirecto, especial, incidental o consecuente, resultante del uso de la información de las declaraciones hechas en este documento. BURÓ DE ENTIDADES FINANCIERAS ¿Qué es el Buró de Entidades Financieras? Es una herramienta de consulta y difusión con la que podrás conocer los productos que ofrecen las entidades financieras, sus comisiones y tasas, las reclamaciones de los usuarios, las prácticas no sanas en que incurren, las sanciones administrativas que les han impuesto, las cláusulas abusivas de sus contratos y otra información que resulte relevante para informarte sobre su desempeño. Con el Buró de Entidades Financieras, se logrará saber quién es quién en bancos, seguros, sociedades financieras de objeto múltiple, cajas de ahorro, afores, entre otras entidades. Con ello, podrás comparar y evaluar a las entidades financieras, sus productos y servicios y tendrás mayores elementos para elegir lo que más te convenga. Esta información te será útil para elegir un producto financiero y también para conocer y usar mejor los que ya tienes. Este Buró de Entidades Financieras, es una herramienta que puede contribuir al crecimiento económico del país, al promover la competencia entre las instituciones financieras; que impulsará la transparencia al revelar información a los usuarios sobre el desempeño de éstas y los productos que ofrecen y que va a facilitar un manejo responsable de los productos y servicios financieros al conocer a detalle sus características. Lo anterior, podrá derivar en un mayor bienestar social, porque al conjuntar en un solo espacio tan diversa información del sistema financiero, el usuario tendrá más elementos para optimizar su presupuesto, para mejorar sus finanzas personales, para utilizar correctamente los créditos que fortalecerán su economía y obtener los seguros que la protejan, entre otros aspectos. Puedes consultar la información relativa al Buró de Entidades Financieras, tanto de Atradius Seguros de Crédito. S.A., como de todo el sector asegurador en el siguiente enlace: