Economic developments in the six GCC countries
The rapid recovery of oil prices (after their sharp drop in 2008) had a strong positive impact on the fiscal and external balance of all six countries. The oil prices remained high until the end of 2014 when they collapsed (in this article, we refer to the period between 2009 and the end of 2014 as the “oil price boom”). They averaged USD 95.3 in the period between mid-2009 and the end of 2014, and have dropped to an average of USD 50.3 in the period since then, as shown in graph 1. While the oil price started to rise again in May 2018, it remains to be seen whether this increase will persist.