MUscat: The value of Oman’s non-oil exports touched OMR2,600.8 million in the first 10 months of 2017, 28.2 per cent up from the OMR2,028.4 million registered in the same January to October period of the previous year.
A major recovery in energy prices indirectly helped the country strengthen its non-oil export revenue as well. Since prices of several petrochemical products are positively correlated to the global prices of energy, Oman could immensely gain from a rise in oil prices. A robust growth was witnessed in the export of minerals, plastics and rubber, and base metals and chemical products, shows the latest monthly statistics released by the National Centre for Statistics and Information (NCSI) on Wednesday.
Among the Sultanate’s non-oil products, exports of minerals surged by 50.6 per cent to OMR679.8 million, and exports of plastics and rubber shot up by 40.6 per cent year-on-year to OMR166.6 million during the January to October period of 2017.
Further, export revenue from chemical products and base metals jumped year-on-year by 33.6 per cent and 35.4 per cent to OMR674.2 million and OMR526.8 million, respectively, the NCSI report stated.
Exports of live animals and electrical machinery, however, witnessed a fall during the January to October period of last year.
As part of the country’s diversification programme, Oman has been taking several major steps to strengthen its export base of non-oil products, including the mineral sector. Apart from petrochemicals, the Sultanate’s focused non-oil export products include processed aluminium, fertilisers, fish, minerals, metals and metal products, dates, chemicals, plastic products, detergents, mattresses, and pharmaceuticals.
The country’s export promotion agency, Ithraa, not only conducts market surveys in potential export markets, but also organises trade exhibitions to promote Omani products. Re-exports showed a 6.3 per cent fall to OMR1,630.70 million from OMR1,740.2 million during the period under review.
The country’s total exports grew by 20.4 per cent to OMR10.20 billion during the January to October period of 2017, from OMR8,469.6 million for the same period of the previous year, mainly on account of a recovery in crude oil prices in the international market.
Export revenue from oil and gas rose by 26.9 per cent to OMR5,965 million for the first 10 months of 2017 from OMR4,700.90 million in the same period of 2016.
Also, the average price of Oman Crude in January 2018 surged by 36.6 per cent to $60.8 per barrel from $44.5 a barrel for the same period of last year.
This was against the government’s assumed price of $50 per barrel for estimating the budget revenue for this year.