The plan aims to save 800 million Bahraini dinars ($2.1 billion, 1.84 billion euros) annually, the government said, as the kingdom looks to curb its debt after years of lower oil prices.
The Ministers of Finance of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, the State of Kuwait…4 | the publication reaches you by | Bahrain News
The reform programme includes cutting public expenditure and government waste, voluntary retirements for government workers and “redirecting” state subsidies.
The authorities said they are also looking to increase “non-oil revenues, to drive economic growth, diversify government income streams and align non-oil revenue with positive economic growth”.
Khalid al-Rumaihi, executive director of Bahrain’s Economic Development Board, said the country requires $20 billion to balance its books and that the government will provide half of that figure.
Bahrain’s budget deficit is expected to reach $3.5 billion in 2018, after hitting about $5 billion in 2017.
Located between rival regional powers Saudi Arabia and Iran, Bahrain has been ruled for more than two centuries by the Sunni Al-Khalifa dynasty.
Saudi Arabia has been a major supporter and in 2011 sent in forces along with the UAE to help protect Bahrain’s rulers against protests by the Shiite majority.
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