Saudi Arabia said on Monday it posted a deficit of 4.6 billion riyals ($1.23 billion) in the second quarter, a huge drop from 109.2 billion riyals reported in the same quarter a year ago amidst a crash oil prices.
The kingdom, the Arab world’s largest economy and the world’s top exporter, realised revenues of248 billion riyals, with oil income rising 38% year – on – year to 132.15 billion in the second quarter.
Non – oil revenues climb to 115.96 billion riyals from 38.23 billion riyals a year earlier.
Saudi Arabia’s economy grew in the second quarter quarter for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began 18 months ago, fuelled by a 11.1 % growth in the non – oil sector, according to government data.
A Finance Ministry report said public expenditure in the second quarter amounted to 252.7 billion riyals, up 4% from the same quarter last year..
The kingdom had last year introduced measures such as tripling of a value – added tax removal of a cost of living allowance to replenish state coffers depleted by the historic slide in crude prices and as the pandemic damaged non – oil revenues.
This along with consolidation measures had allowed the government to reduce the budget in the first quarter of 2021.
The budget deficit had ballooned to over 11% of gross domestic product last year, according to International Monetary Fund estimates. The IMF expects Saudi Arabia to bring down its fiscal deficit to 4.2% of GDP this year.