By John Lee.
Iraq’s GDP is expected to grow by 33% over the next three years, according to a report from Reuters.
The average rate of about 10% per annum over the next three years will be driven by increased oil revenues, Mudher Kasim, deputy governor of the central bank, told Reuters in an interview.
“Without the oil, in my opinion, it (GDP) would not exceed 4.5 percent, but the oil sector (makes up) 60 percent of the economy,” he said. “Oil adds a lot to GDP. Each increase of 100,000 bpd of exports adds more than $3.4 bln per year."
Kasim said he hoped the rate of GDP increase would exceeed 10 percent after the three-year period if other sectors outside of the oil industry saw increased investment.
He added that the central bank expects that Iraq’s federal reserves will hit around $75 billion by the end of 2013 from $67 billion currently if oil prices stay at present levels and exports continue to perform as estimated.
Iraq has the world’s fourth-largest oil reserves and is producing more than 3 million barrels per day (bpd) for the first time in three decades. It has ambitions to double its oil production over the next three years.