Saudi Arabia Economic Forecast

Saudi Arabia Economic Outlook

November 3, 2020

The contraction likely eased slightly in Q3 after Q2’s record GDP contraction due to flagging oil production and domestic lockdown measures. The year-on-year fall in oil production eased in Q3 as output rose in September for the first time since April. In addition, the non-oil private sector PMI averaged higher in Q3 and pointed to a stabilization in output, supported by easing lockdown restrictions, despite July’s VAT hike. Turning to Q4, however, a global surge in Covid-19 cases weighed on oil prices in October. Meanwhile, the government unveiled projections for next year’s budget in late September. The preliminary estimates show an approximate 7.3% spending cut and a 9.8% increase in revenues. The country plans to shift spending towards the sectors hit hardest by the pandemic to support the recovery, while prioritizing fiscal discipline.

Saudi Arabia Economic Growth

Next year, the economy should rebound robustly on the back of stronger oil production and as domestic demand recovers from this year’s lockdown measures, which have hampered investment and household spending. That said, a more restrictive budget, uncertainty around the evolution of the pandemic and volatile global oil prices pose downside risks to the outlook. FocusEconomics panelists see GDP growing 3.7% in 2021, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. In 2022, the panel sees economic growth at 2.9%.

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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