Qatar will see biggest GDP rise in region as analysts see brighter future for Middle East

The Gulf economy is set for stronger growth than predicted this year, with Qatar seeing the biggest rise in gross domestic product in the region, a new survey has found. Qatar will remain the region's leader with a 16.1% jump in GDP in 2010, according to the median forecast of 20 analysts polled by Reuters.

A previous poll in November of the same analysts found Qatar was forecast to grow by 12.5% but the analysts believe Qatar’s plans to ramp up its natural gas facilities will mean more growth.

The UAE will be the slowest growing country, with a GDP increase of 2.5%. This was a more conservative forecast than in November when the analysts predicted the country would grow by 2.95%. The forecast may have been made before Dubai state-linked developer Dubai World asked for a “standstill on repaying $22bn of its debts.

The analysts thought Kuwait would emerge from recession this year, growing by 3.4%, a slightly faster pace than Bahrain, while Oman should see GDP growth of 4%.