IMF says UAE overall real GDP projected to grow 4% in 2024

By Thomson Reuters May 20, 2024 | 5:13 AM

DUBAI (Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on Monday the United Arab Emirates was experiencing strong economic growth, with overall real GDP projected to grow by about 4% this year, higher than earlier estimates.

The IMF had projected GDP growth for the Gulf oil exporter at 3.5% in 2024 in its most recent Regional Economic Outlook report, published in April.

In its latest Article IV end of mission statement, the IMF’s delegation noted that economic growth in the UAE was broad based, and driven by solid domestic activity in sectors such as tourism, construction and financial services.

“Foreign demand for real estate, increased bilateral and multilateral ties, and the UAE’s safe haven status continue to drive rapid growth in housing prices and an increase in rents, while adding to ample domestic liquidity,” the statement said.

Overall economic growth would likely be further supported by higher hydrocarbon GDP growth this year, in part driven by higher crude oil production from the UAE’s OPEC+ quota increase, it added.

The UAE – one of the world’s top oil exporters – has accelerated plans to diversify its economy away from hydrocarbons and draw foreign investment, with non-oil GDP now representing over 70% of the overall GDP contribution.

The IMF said that accelerated public and private investment and structural reforms, including in areas such as renewable energy and technology, “could spur growth more than expected.”

(Reporting by Federico Maccioni, Editing by William Maclean)