Abu Dhabi Announces Stimulus Package amid Slowdown
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed has announced a 50-billion dirham ($13.6 billion, 11.6 billion euro) stimulus package over the next three years, as the emirate seeks to boost its flagging economy.
He also announced a series of economic initiatives to create 10,000 jobs for nationals over the next five years and to make doing business easier.
"I have approved a 3-year 50 billion dirham economic stimulus package to support Abu Dhabi's economic development," Sheikh Mohammed said on Twitter late Tuesday.
He said he has asked the emirate's executive council to draw up a working plan for allocations within three months.
Abu Dhabi is the capital of United Arab Emirates and the largest of seven emirates making up the UAE federation. Dubai is the other large component of UAE.
The emirate sits on over 90 percent of the huge oil and gas resources in UAE, OPEC's fourth largest producer, and its revenues heavily depend on oil prices.
Oil prices crashed since mid-2014 resulting in large budget deficits for all the Gulf states.
Two weeks ago, UAE announced new incentives to lure foreign investors that included a 100 percent ownership of companies and a 10-year visa for professionals and investors.
The measures by UAE, the Middle East's second largest economy after Saudi Arabia, come amid a slowdown in the oil, tourism and real estate sectors.
The International Monetary Fund said last month that UAE economic growth fell to just 0.5 percent in 2017 from 3.0 percent the previous year, driven by a 2.5 percent contraction in the oil sector.
It said Abu Dhabi's economy contracted by 1.6 percent last year and was projected to grow by just 0.5 percent in 2018.