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Arab News, Monday, Feb 11, 2019 | Jamadi Al Thani 6, 1440

Bahrain looks to cut costs to help cut budget deficit

Bahrain: Bahrain will focus on “stringent” cost controls to help cut its budget deficit, according to the country’s finance minister.
Sheikh Salman bin Khalifa Al-Khalifa, minister of finance and national economy, told Bloomberg Television that Bahrain will also use investment to stimulate growth.
“It is important to ensure we maintain spend where that spend drives economic growth, creates jobs or provides essential services or subsidies while at the same time ensuring we revisit any areas of operational expenditure where we can put more pressure,” Sheikh Salman said.
Bahrain reduced its deficit by 35 percent last year and plans to balance its books by 2022.
Cutting the deficit is one requirement of a $10 billion aid package pledged by neighbors, including Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
Like other regional economies, Bahrain has been hit hard by plummeting oil prices.

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