The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, announced the 2020 budget of 1020 billion riyals.
King Salman described the kingdom’s budget for the next year as “enhancing the Kingdom’s development process and aiming to perpetuate growth and economic and financial stability.”
He affirmed the Kingdom’s government’s determination to “implement economic reforms and diversify sources of income, including investing proceeds from the Aramco offering by the Public Investment Fund.”
He stressed the government’s approach to “optimizing the use of available resources, and raising the efficiency and transparency of government spending, which amounts to 1.020 trillion riyals in next year’s budget.”
He said that the Saudi budget for 2020 “is a continuation of the government’s policy in developing basic services and facilities for citizens, raising the quality of life and sustaining housing plans. We have directed the extension of the cost of living allowance.”
The 2020 budget included a deficit of 187 billion riyals.
Finance Minister Muhammad Al-Jadaan said that actual spending for 2019 is expected to reach 1,048 billion riyals, total actual revenues of about 917 billion riyals, and a deficit of 131 billion riyals (4.7% of GDP).
Al-Jadaan stated that the budget confirms the government’s keenness to continue implementing the main spending plans, implementing major projects, programs for achieving the vision, developing infrastructure, social protection network programs, and developing services provided to citizens in accordance with the Kingdom’s 2030 vision, and the 2020 budget continues to focus on the health and education sectors. What has been allocated to the health and social development sector amounted to about 167 billion riyals, and to the education sector about 193 billion riyals, representing 35% of the total approved spending.
He said, “It is estimated that the percentage of total public debt at the end of 2020 AD will reach 26% of GDP, in light of the government borrowing policy that balances between withdrawing from the state’s general reserve and other sources of financing from inside and outside the Kingdom to maintain adequate levels of local liquidity.” As well as benefiting from foreign exchange inflows, a review of medium-term estimates of real GDP growth rates indicates a growth of about 2.3% in the year 2020 AD, and the growth rate is expected to continue in the medium term.