Dubai: UAE economy achieved real growth of 7.4 per cent in 2007 over 2006 with the gross domestic product reaching Dh698 billion according to the UAE Ministry of Economy.

While the contributions by other non-oil sectors accounted for d Dh455 billion or 65 per cent of the total GDP in 2007, the oil prices averaging at $69.1 billion contributed 35 per cent of the GDP in 2007, followed by the manufacturing sector, whose diversified activities in oil, liquefied gas and factories in free zones – contributed 13 per cent to the GDP in 2007.

Trade and repair services sector is the third biggest contributor to the country's GDP, at 11 per cent.

"It is an important and organized sector with a long history, in which the private sector plays an important role in providing different goods in the country and managing the development of re-exportation activity," the report from the Ministry of Economy said.

The report said that the real estate sector is fast emerging a big contributor to the UAE's GDP. Last year real estate contributed 8 per cent to the country's GDP. The real estate sector, invested Dh25.8 billion in 2007. The government is keen to help UAE nationals to possess free residential units through residential plans, which provide good living standards and social stability. The transportation sector is another sector that enjoys large-scale investments.

More than Dh23.1 billion, or 16 per cent of total investments, has been invested to establish developed infrastructure, including a wide range of internal and external road networks, airport expansions, bridge and tunnel construction, and communications.

The size of fixed investments in 2007 increased to Dh144.5 billion compared to Dh121 billion in 2006, and the investment percentage to domestic product reached 20.7 per cent in 2007.

While manufacturing and real estate sectors together accounted for 35 per cent of the total investments in the country last year, investments industries such petrochemical, building material, medicine and food industries continued to surge.

The crude oil sector invested Dh15.8 billion last year. Around 10.9 per cent of the country's total investments in 2007 were in the form of huge projects to develop productive and explored oil fields to ensure continuous oil and gas production; thereby contributing to the stability of prices at international markets.

Public and private (household) consumption expenditure together grew 21.2 per cent from Dh330 billion in 2006 to Dh400 billion in 2007.

While the government's consumption expenditure accounted for 18.5 per cent household expenditure represents 81.5 per cent.

The report attributes rise in private expenditure to the annual population increase, the rise in standards of living, rising consumption, as well as the increase in prices for all goods and services.