Saudi Arabia Economic Forecast

Saudi Arabia Economic Outlook

September 7, 2021

GDP expanded for the first time since Q2 2019 in the second quarter of this year, according to a flash estimate. The rebound was primarily the result of a weaker contraction in the oil sector, which was consistent with OPEC+’s decision to ease output cuts since May. Moreover, growth in the non-oil sector surged in the second quarter. The real estate market, wholesale and retail trade, and the manufacturing sectors were particularly strong in Q2. Turning to Q3, GDP growth should be gaining steam as OPEC+’s commitment to lower production cuts continues to fuel the oil sector: Crude oil output hit the highest level since April 2020 in July, and it should remain on the up in the rest of the quarter. Meanwhile, the non-oil private sector PMI remained comfortably in expansionary territory in July and August, signaling strong growth in the non-oil economy.

Saudi Arabia Economic Growth

GDP should grow robustly in 2021 due to stronger domestic and external demand. Nevertheless, weaker government expenditure and lower average oil production relative to last year will likely weigh on overall GDP, while uncertainty with regard to new Covid-19 variants and oil demand poses a downside risk to the outlook. FocusEconomics panelists see GDP growing 2.4% in 2021, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. In 2022, the panel sees economic growth at 4.6%.

Saudi Arabia Economy Data

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Population (million)31.131.832.633.434.1
GDP per capita (USD)21,06320,28421,11323,53623,265
GDP (USD bn)654645689786793
Economic Growth (GDP, annual variation in %)4.11.7-0.72.40.3
Consumption (annual variation in %)-  -  -  -  -  
Investment (annual variation in %)3.7-14.00.7-2.14.0
Industrial Production (annual variation in %)5.02.3-2.42.7-2.6
Unemployment Rate5.75.65.96.05.6
Fiscal Balance (% of GDP)-15.8-12.9-9.2-5.9-4.5
Public Debt (% of GDP)5.813.117.219.022.8
Money (annual variation in %)2.50.80.32.77.1
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %, eop)1.21.0-1.11.9-0.2
Inflation Rate (CPI, annual variation in %)1.22.1-0.82.5-2.1
Policy Interest Rate (%)2.002.002.003.002.25
Exchange Rate (vs USD)3.753.753.753.753.75
Exchange Rate (vs USD, aop)3.753.753.753.753.75
Current Account (% of GDP)-8.7-3.71.59.06.3
Current Account Balance (USD bn)-56.7-23.810.570.649.8
Trade Balance (USD billion)44.355.898.5169129
Exports (USD billion)204184222294262
Imports (USD billion)159128123126132
Exports (annual variation in %)-40.6-9.820.932.7-11.2
Imports (annual variation in %)0.5-19.8-3.51.85.3
International Reserves (USD)616536496496499
External Debt (% of GDP)13.824.627.728.1-  

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Saudi Arabia Facts

Value Change Date
Bond Yield2.490.0 %Jun 23
Exchange Rate3.750.0 %Dec 31
Stock Market0.21.00 %Jan 07

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