Posted on June 13, 2015

Qatar's crude oil production is expected to rebound, averaging 709,000 barrels per day in 2015, said The Peninsula. The country's crude production fell to 635,000 barrels per day in April 2015 from 708,000 barrels per day in March.

The country's hydrocarbon sector expanded by 1.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014, after shrinking 2.8 percent in the second quarter. Barzan gas project is forecast to generate modest growth in the hydrocarbon sector, QNB's monthly monitor on Qatari economy noted. On Tuesday, in its "Qatar Economic Outlook 2015-17', The Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics (MDPS) also noted that Barzan gas project will boost the country's upstream hydrocarbon production.

According to the QNB research note, the share of investment in GDP rose to 33.4 percent in 2014 from 29.6 percent in 2013 on rising capital spending from the government; the share of exports declined with lower oil prices. "We expect the shares of private consumption and investment to increase on high population growth and strong government investments; lower expected oil prices in 2015 should reduce the share of exports, before bouncing back in 2016", the analysts said.

Qatar population grew by 9.2 percent year-on-year in May 2015 to reach 2.37m, driven by the large ramp up in infrastructure spending. "We expect Qatar's ongoing investment programme to continue to attract expatriates, resulting in an overall population growth of 7.0 percent in 2015". On Qatar's broad money (M2) growth, QNB analysts noted that the M2 growth was stable in April (5.4 percent) compared to March (5.2 percent) on steady deposit growth. QNB expects M2 growth to pick up, reaching 10.8 percent in 2015 as strong population growth is projected to drive deposit growth. 

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The Qatar Central Bank (QCB) real estate index rose 29.6 percent year-on-year in March 2015. Real estate price inflation moderated from the second successive month. QNB expects real estate prices to continue their strong growth although at a more moderate pace. Qatar's international reserves rose to $41.0bn in April 2015 from $39.5bn in March. The accumulation of international reserves is expected to continue, reaching $46.0bn, or 8 months of import cover in 2015. 

Bank deposits grew by 6.1 percent year-on-year in April 2015. Public sector deposits contracted by 8.4 percent; but the private sector deposits grew by 5.5 percent and non-resident deposits grew by a whopping 119.5 percent. Banking credit grew strongly in April, driven by private sector and foreign credit. Public sector lending contracted by 9.6 percent year-on-year while lending to the private and foreign sectors grew by 10.6 percent and 58.6 percent, respectively.

QNB forecast bank lending to grow by 9.0 percent in 2015, increasingly driven by project lending and expanding population. Banking sector assets grew in April on the expansion of domestic and foreign credit. Banks' assets grew by 6.9 percent year-on-year in April 2015 driven by strong lending growth. Banking assets are expected to rise by 10.0 percent in 2015, increasingly driven by project lending.