Saudi Arabia: GDP growth remains strong in Q4
A flash estimate showed that the economy grew 5.4% on an annual basis in Q4, after having expanded 8.7% in Q3. The print means that the economy grew 8.9% over 2022 as a whole, the fastest pace in the MENA region.
The oil sector grew 6.1% in Q4 compared to 14.2% in Q3. Growth in the non-oil private sector rose to 6.2% in Q4 from 6.1% in Q3, while government services growth eased to 1.8% in Q4 from 2.5% in Q3.
Q4’s deceleration was in part due to a base effect—seasonally adjusted quarter-on-quarter growth rose to 1.5% in Q4 from 1.2% in Q3. The non-oil private sector drove the improvement in qoq terms. Meanwhile, oil sector production contracted as a result of OPEC+’s quota cut, while government services production grew at a slightly weaker rate. Looking ahead to Q1 2023, our panelists expect year-on-year growth to weaken on a tougher base effect and the hit to oil production arising from the quota cut.