|Arab and international|
Economy News Baghdad:
An economic report predicts that the size of Saudi Arabia's public debt will rise by about $ 31 billion by the end of this year, as the government continues to borrow from local banks to finance the budget deficit.
The public debt will rise from about $ 84.5 billion by the end of 2016 to $ 115.5 billion by the end of 2017 and will continue to rise to $ 167.5 billion by the end of 2018, according to a report by Saudi Arabia's Jadwa Investment Company.
The increase will lead to an increase in the general debt ratio of GDP from about 13.1% to 16.2% and 21.7% in the same period.
The actual budget deficit for the current fiscal year is expected to reach 48.5 billion dollars against a presumed deficit of 52.8 billion dollars, while actual revenues were estimated at 188.8 billion dollars and expenditures at 237.3 billion dollars.
The report pointed out that the improvement in oil prices will lead to an increase in the revenues of crude exports to the Kingdom by 20% from 136 billion dollars in 2016 to 163 billion dollars this year, pointing out that the average prices of Saudi crude will increase from 40.6 dollars a barrel to 51.5 dollars, At 10.2 million barrels per day.
Despite the expected increase in Saudi debt, it remains much lower than the end of the 1990s when it exceeded $ 150 billion as the fiscal deficit worsened considerably due to weak oil prices and declining Saudi production.
Besides borrowing from local banks, Saudi Arabia, which has the world's second-largest oil reserves, is drawing on foreign assets to finance the budget deficit.
In this context, Jadwa predicted that this year's drawdown would reduce the Kingdom's external financial reserves from about $ 534 billion by the end of 2016 to $ 488 billion by the end of this year, and continue to fall to $ 452 billion by the end of 2018.
Saudi Arabia estimated this year's deficit at $ 52.8 billion, with projected revenues of $ 184.5 billion and $ 237.3 billion in expenditures.
According to data published by the Ministry of Finance recently, the actual revenues in the first half of this year jumped by 29% to 81.8 billion dollars compared to the first half of last year, while expenditures fell by about 2% to 101.4 billion dollars with a deficit of about 19.6 billion dollars registered A significant decline of about 51% compared to the same period last year.
The rise in public debt in Saudi Arabia to 31 billion dollars
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