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Dubai Lowers 2013 Budget Deficit Forecast to Below 0.5% of GDP

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Dec. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Dubai’s ruler, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, approved a budget that forecast a gap of less than 0.5 percent of 2013’s gross domestic product, the Dubai Media Office said in an e-mailed statement today.

The emirate expects revenue to rise 7.8 percent next year to 32.62 billion dirhams ($8.9 billion) with spending at 34.12 billion dirhams, according to the statement. The budget gap is expected to narrow by 18 percent compared with 2012.

Government spending on infrastructure will fall by 5 percentage points to 16 percent of total expenditure because of the completion of a number of “large projects,” according to the statement. “The government remains committed to its announced infrastructure projects which participate in economic growth and stimulate domestic and foreign investments,” the media office said.

Dubai allocated 6 percent of spending to debt servicing, it said. The emirate owes 10.3 billion dirhams in outstanding debt and interest next year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

To contact the reporter on this story: Dana El Baltaji in Dubai at delbaltaji@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew J. Barden at barden@bloomberg.net

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