Saudi Arabia posts surplus for first time since 2014

Saudi Arabia had a budget surplus of SAR 27.8 billion ($7.41 billion) in Q1, driven by both oil and non-oil revenues. According to a report published by the Ministry of Finance, in the first quarter of 2019, oil revenues were SAR 169 billion, a 48% increase from Q1 2018. Non oil revenue reached SAR 76.3 billion, a 46 percent year-on-year increase; and a 8 percent increase in expenditure compared to 2018.

This is the first time the Kingdom has had a budget surplus since 2014. In 2015, after the low in oil prices, the finance ministry announced a budget deficit of approximately SAR 367 billion, representing about 15 percent of the Kingdom’s GDP.

The ministry’s report also included these figures:

  • The Saudi economy grew 2.2 percent in 2018, with the non oil sector comprising 56.2 percent of total GDP
  • First quarter oil revenue climbed to SAR 149 billion, compared with SAR 114 billion the same period in 2018
  • Income from non oil activities rose to SAR 76.3 billion compared with SAR 52.3 billion the previous year.