HomeAbout Bahrain > Economy

Economy: Along with competitive costs, easy access to the rest of the Middle East, and a well-established business infrastructure, you will find that the Kingdom of Bahrain has a great deal of experience in understanding the needs of foreign businesses and responding to them. Bahrain regards foreign investment as key to its Economic Vision 2030 long-term plan for improving the competitiveness of our economy, creating skilled jobs for Bahrainis and enhancing living standards. For this reason, Bahrain is committed to building on our existing advantages, aiming to build the Middle East’s most attractive centre for business.

The 2030 Economic Vision: The 2030 Economic Vision, launched by His Majesty King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa in October 2008 embodies a comprehensive vision for the Kingdom of Bahrain that aims at creating a clear approach to develop the kingdom’s economy while focusing on the main objective which is to improve the standard of living of all Bahraini citizens. The vision was launched after four years of elaborate discussions with a group of decision makers in the public and private sectors including government institutions and concerned entities in addition to a number of think tanks and international institutions. The 2030 Economic Vision focuses on crystallizing an integrated socio-economic government vision and focuses on three basic principles which are competitiveness, integrity and sustainability. After the launch of the vision, the Kingdom of Bahrain began an institutional economic reform program that is in line with the objective of the 2030 Economic Vision. This led to the preparation of a national economic strategy that represents a roadmap to achieve the vision. This strategy is continuously revised to adapt to the international changes and the government’s work program.

National Development Strategy: The Government has developed a National Economic Strategy for the planning period of 2008-2014 to guide the direction of the economy and Government. It illustrated the links between government policies, identified key initiatives to be implemented over the planning period, assigned responsibility for the initiatives, and outlined the actions necessary to achieve them. Since the 2030 Economic Vision and the accompanying National Economic Strategy were adopted by the Kingdom, much progress has been achieved in reforming Bahrain’s economy and in increasing the effectiveness of Government institutions. In light of experience and changing circumstances, National Development Strategy (2015-2018) represents the next step in Bahrain’s journey toward the attainment of the Vision, as it outlines the medium-term strategic direction of the country in the 2015-2018 planning period.

Bahrain named top Middle East expat destination. Bahrain has been named the top expat destination in the Middle East, according to the InterNations Expat Insider 2015 survey.

Bahrain was ranked the 17th most popular destination for expats in the world. The InterNations Expat Insider 2015 survey ranks countries by different factors such as the quality of life, personal finance, working abroad and making friends.

Bahrain has the lowest taxes in the GCC: With no corporation, income, value-added, withholding tax, capital gains or wealth taxes and no inheritance taxes or death duties Bahrain is the most tax efficient business base in the Gulf *.

Bahrain is renowned as a “Business Friendly” liberal society; open-minded and actively encourages private enterprise.

Leading the region in supporting private enterprise. Bahrain was the first GCC country with depleted oil reserves, consequently the Kingdom diversified early on by encouraging private enterprise. Bahrain’s non-oil GDP is already in excess of 80%. Bahrain is actively encouraging private sector growth by allowing 100% foreign ownership and repatriation on income. The whole of the Kingdom is effectively one massive Free Zone.

Major centres including Riyadh, Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Doha are around an hour’s flight time. Harbour Towers is only 10 minutes drive from Bahrain International Airport, headquarters to Gulf Air the best connected airline for regional flights.

Consequently, access to every market in the Middle East is quick and efficient – by air, sea and road.

It’s not all about location, it’s also about the people. Bahrain has a highly developed workforce largely due to organizations like Tamkeen that identifies “skill gaps” in the market then invests in training Bahraini’s to gain the expertise to meet market needs. In the financial services sector alone, two-thirds of employees are Bahraini. The Harbour property is run efficiently with a 166 strong support team provided by a professional facilities management service.

The Economic Indexes for the Kingdom of Bahrain:

The Index  The Value
The gross domestic product in current prices  31.1 Billion US Dollars (2015) 
The gross domestic product in fixed prices   30.8 Billion US Dollars (2015) 
The growth in the gross domestic product the percentage growth for one year after the other  2.9% (2015) 
The inflation in the consumer price index 
(100= 2006) annual change 
3.3% (June 2013) 
Population  1,423,726 (2016) 
Employment rate (the workforce as a percentage of the population between 20 and 64 years of age)  79.0% (2010) 
Bahrainis  58.4% (2010) 
Non-Bahrainis  89.7% (2010) 
Unemployment rate  4.3% (2016) 
Public sector debt (% of the gross domestic product)  37.6% (2015) 
Current account  8.9% (2015) 

The contribution of the various economic sectors in the gross domestic product (2015):

 The Index  The Value
Oil and natural gas  13.35%
Processing industries  17.34%
Transport and telecommunications 7.52% 
Commerce 4.61% 
Real estate and business services  5.70% 
Financial projects  17.18% 
Government services  14% 
Agriculture and fishing  0.32% 
Water and electricity  1.41% 
Building and construction  7.39% 
Hotels and restaurants  2.44% 
Social and personal services  6.04% 

Sources: Bahrain financial harbor, EDB, The Information & e-Government Authority

GDP: $19.66 billion per year
GDP at parity: $26.75 billion per year (2008 est.)
GDP per capita: $34,662 per year (2008 est.)
Currency: Bahraini Dinar is the official currency composed at units of 1000 fils
US $1= .378 fils

Economic Development Board of Bahrain
Ministry of Industry & Commerce 
Ministry of Finance
Bahrain Financial Harbour (BFH)
The Central Bank of Bahrain
Bahrain Stock Exchange

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  • *Ministry of Foreign Affairs' is responsible for coordinating and implementing all matters related to the nation's foreign policy, Bahrain's relations with other countries and international organizations, and to protecting the interests of Bahraini citizens abroad.
  • Damascus – el-Mezzeh – 

    Sharquiya villas - Al-Farabi St.

    Telephone: 00963-116132314
    Fax: 00963-116130502