Saudi Arabia goes ahead with its wide reforms and allocates the necessary budget

Saudi Arabia goes ahead with its wide reforms and allocates the necessary budget

Saudi Arabia unveils the largest budget in the Kingdom’s history On Dec. 18, Saudi Arabia has announced its fiscal budget for 2019.

According to Saudi resources, it is the largest-ever budget of SAR 1.106 trillion ($295bn; £233bn) with an increase of 7 percent in expenditure over the previous year and a lower deficit by 4.2 percent.

In a notable commitment to Vision 2030 reform plan, the budget is intended to accelerate the economic growth, and go through with implementing various economic and social reforms, which are part of Vision 2030. This is in parallel with improving the basic services provided to citizens and residents alike, strengthening the role of the private sector as a strategic partner in advancing development, controlling the financial management, and enforcing greater transparency and fiscal disclosure.

Paying a considerable attention to fulfilling the Saudis’ needs, the major share of the 2019 budget is allocated to education with SAR193bn; financing Vision 2030 initiatives as well as projects for educational complexes and schools across the Kingdom. Health sector comes third with SAR172bn; building 35 hospitals with a capacity of 8,850 beds. Another big share of SAR156bn is given to the General Public spending, including the government’s share of the General Organization for Retirement and Social Security, the cost of debt, budget support, budget account provision and emergency expenses.

Oil revenues are projected to increase to $176.5bn, with 68% of total state revenues, instead of only $162bn in 2018.

Non-oil revenue is predicted to escalate to 32 percent to total government revenues in 2019 from only 8 percent in 2012, given that raising non-oil revenues and decreasing oil-dependency is a top priority in the Vision 2030 reform plan.

“We are determined to move along the path of economic reform, the new fiscal year budget is the largest-ever along the Kingdom history and it aims at boosting the Kingdom’s economic growth, raising spending efficiency and achieving sustainability and financial stability within the objectives of the Vision 2030 reform plan” King Salman said.