Oil sector’s role crucial

MANAMA: The oil sector has played a crucial role in mitigating the fallout of Covid-19, while other economic indicators bore the brunt of the pandemic.

According to a report issued by the Finance and National Economy Ministry, this vital sector recorded a 1.8 per cent year-on year real growth at constant prices, driven by an increase in oil and gas production by 0.5pc and 12.5pc respectively, during the first quarter of this year.

The pandemic took its toll on the non-oil sector which recorded 1.7pc year-on-year decline at constant prices during the same period.

Details of Q1 2020 Bahrain Economic Quarterly report were unveiled during the weekly Cabinet meeting, chaired remotely by His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa.

His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Crown Prince, Deputy Supreme Commander and First Deputy Premier, attended the virtual session.

The global impact of Covid-19 affected Bahrain’s overall economic performance in Q1, causing a 1.1pc decline in real GDP growth (at constant prices) year-on-year, while the rate of decline reached 4.9pc at current prices.

According to the report, submitted by Finance and National Economy Minister Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, performance of the non-oil sectors varied during the first three months of this year.

The manufacturing sector proved resilient, achieving a positive real growth of 4.8pc, supported by an increase in production volumes at Alba.

The social and personal services sector went up by 1.3pc and the construction sector posted a growth of 0.3pc.

The financial projects sector, the largest non-oil sector, contributed 16.7pc, a decrease of 1.6pc during the first quarter of this year.

The hospitality sector (hotels and restaurants) was the hardest hit by the pandemic, dropping by 36pc at constant prices.

The transportation and telecommunications sector fell by 6.3pc due to the devastating impact of Covid-19 on tourism and aviation as a result of the curbs on travelling.

The government services sector recorded a decline of 2.9pc, while real estate and business activities fell by 0.4pc, and trade sectors by 0.1pc.

l The Premier yesterday urged a forward-looking plan for reopening schools and universities, taking into account potential Covid-19 developments.

He stressed the need to heed the health and safety of students above all and ensure they continue their learning unhindered.

The Premier tasked the Supreme Education and Training Council, chaired by Deputy Premier Shaikh Mohammed bin Mubarak Al Khalifa, and the Education Minister to take the necessary measures.


Source: http://www.gdnonline.com/Details/837095/Oil-sector’s-role-crucial


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