Bahrain - Market OverviewBahrain - Market Overview
- Bahrain, along with Oman, is one of two Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) members to have signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States.
- Bahrain permits one hundred percent foreign-ownership of a business or branch office, without the need for a local partner; no other GCC member state allows this.
- Bahrain has no tax on corporate income, personal income, wealth, capital gains, withholding, or death/inheritance.
- Bahrain has no restrictions on repatriation of capital, profits or dividends.
- The Heritage Foundation ranked Bahrain as the world’s eighteenth freest economy in its 2015 Index of Economic Freedom, the highest ranking of any country in the GCC region.
- The World Bank ranked Bahrain fifty-three out of one hundred eighty nine countries for ease of doing business in its “Doing Business 2015” report.
- Bahrain’s Economic Development Board (EDB) forecasted in its March 2015 report real GDP would grow by 3.6 percent in 2015. Although real GDP growth rates have slowed considerably since 2013, mostly due to declining revenues from hydrocarbons sales, real GDP growth in the non-hydrocarbons sectors remains robust. EDB forecasted real GDP growth in the non-hydrocarbons sectors will reach 4.5 percent in 2015.
- The proposed 2015-2016 budget includes projected capital expenditures of BD 1.02 billion (USD $2.70 billion). BD 422 million (USD $1.12 billion) will be spent on infrastructure projects and BD 130 million (USD $344 million) will be on housing construction. Additionally, a substantial but undisclosed amount will be spent on capital projects funded by aid from GCC countries, particularly Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the U.A.E.
Bahrain Trade Development and Promotion