Saudi Arabia posts budget surplus of $27.68bn in 2022

Saudi Arabia recorded a budget surplus of 103.9 billion riyals ($27.68 billion) in 2022, beating its own estimates, as higher oil prices boosted government revenues by 31%, according to finance ministry data.

The world’s top oil exporter recorded real GDP growth of 8.7% in 2022 leading to the Gulf state’s first budget surplus in almost a decade.

It had previously estimated a budget surplus of 102 billion riyals, or about 2.6% of GDP, for 2022, but is projecting a narrower surplus for 2023.

Saudi Arabia’s total revenues in 2022 hit nearly 1.27 trillion riyals, up 31% over 2021, and slightly higher than estimated. Oil revenues in 2022 totaled about 857.3 billion riyals, up 52% from the previous year.

However, non-oil revenue picked up in the fourth quarter, rising 19% from the prior-year period, outperforming oil revenue which increased 17% in the fourth quarter, according to a report from the finance ministry.

Total spending in 2022 rose 12% from the previous year to 1.16 trillion riyals.

The Gulf state recorded a fiscal surplus in the first three quarters of 2022, but reported a deficit of 45.7 billion riyals in the fourth quarter, when OPEC+ oil production cuts kicked in.

Saudi Arabia’s total public debt stood at just over 990 billion riyals at the end of 2022.


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