Arab News, Monday, Jan 02, 2023 | Jamadi Al Thani 9, 1444
Oman ratifies its 2023 budget
Oman’s Sultan ratified a 2023 budget with a deficit of 1.3 billion Omani rials
($3.38 billion) or 3 percent of GDP, the finance ministry said on Sunday, adding
that the 2022 budget achieved a surplus of 1.146 rials.
The 2023 budget sees revenues of 10.05 bln Omani
rials, 5 percent lower than 2022, and expenditures of 11.35 bln rials, 6.4
percent lower the previous year.
Higher oil prices boosted 2022 revenues to 14.234
billion rials, the finance ministry said. Last year’s budget had been based on a
forecast price of $50 per barrel but the government now estimates the average
price in 2022 to be $94.
The 2023 budget is based on a price of $55 per
Public spending in 2022 was 13.088 billion rials,
the ministry said. The surplus allowed the government to reduce public debt from
20.8 billion rials in 2021 to 17.7 billion rials in 2022.
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects Oman
to post fiscal and external surpluses over the medium term, due mainly to higher
oil revenue, fiscal discipline and the introduction of value added tax.
Last month, S&P Global upgraded Oman’s credit
rating to BB, from BB-, on improved fiscal performance and lower public debt.