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Business & Finance Print 2023-11-06

KSA posts budget deficit of $9.5bn in 3Q

Published November 6, 2023
A Saudi Arabia flag flies in front of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 13, 2018. - Saudi Arabia dismissed on Octiber 13 accusations that Jamal Khashoggi was ordered murdered by a hit squad inside its Istanbul consulate as "lies and baseless allegations", as Riyadh and Ankara spar over the missing journalist's fate. (Photo by Yasin AKGUL / AFP) — AFP or licensors
A Saudi Arabia flag flies in front of the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 13, 2018. - Saudi Arabia dismissed on Octiber 13 accusations that Jamal Khashoggi was ordered murdered by a hit squad inside its Istanbul consulate as "lies and baseless allegations", as Riyadh and Ankara spar over the missing journalist's fate. (Photo by Yasin AKGUL / AFP) — AFP or licensors

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia posted a budget deficit of 35.8 billion riyals ($9.54 billion) in the third quarter, data released by the finance ministry showed on Wednesday, as oil revenue fell sharply.

The budget deficit for the first nine months of the year stood at 44 billion riyals, the finance ministry said in a budget update.

The world’s top oil exporter recorded a budget surplus of almost $30 billion in 2022 as higher oil prices last year boosted government revenue by 31%.

But lower prices and extended voluntary cuts to crude production this year, which the kingdom says is a pre-emptive step to stabilise markets, have hit oil revenue and weighed on growth.

Total revenue in the third quarter was 258.5 billion riyals, down 14% year-on-year, of which oil revenue constituted 147 billion riyals, down 36% over the same period in 2022.

However, non-oil revenue, at 111.5 billion riyals, surged 53% from the prior-year period.

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