The Ministry of Finance welcomed the final statement issued by the IMF experts’ mission following the conclusion of the hypothetical Article IV consultations with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the year 2021, which took place during the month (April 2021 AD). The unemployment rate fell and the CPI inflation slowed.
According to the IMF experts’ expectations, real GDP growth will reach 2.1% during the current year and 4.8% in 2022 (compared to a decrease of 4.1% in 2020 AD). The real non-oil GDP growth rate recovered in the second half of 2020, and high-frequency indicators indicate a continued recovery in 2021. Non-oil growth is expected to reach 3.9% in 2021 and 3.6% in 2022, compared to a decline of 2.3% in 2020. In light of the levels of oil production agreed upon by the OPEC + group, real oil GDP growth is expected to reach -0.5% in 2021 (compared to -6.7% in 2020), reaching 6.8%In the year 2022 AD, when the OPEC + agreement is supposed to expire, as announced.
The statement noted the success of the Kingdom’s government in reducing the incidence and deaths resulting from the Corona pandemic, thanks to the rapid and resolute response to the (Covid-19) crisis, praising the role of the public finance, financial sector and employment support programs launched by the government and the Saudi Central Bank in mitigating the repercussions of the Corona pandemic. This has coincided with the great progress in implementing the vaccination campaign in recent months.
The statement indicated that the Saudi economy was able to manage the crisis thanks to efforts consistent with the directions of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 aimed at establishing a strong governance structure and cooperation between ministries and agencies, and the expansion of the pace of digital transformation at the level of government and financial services, and the public financial and financial sector policies that allowed strong margins of safety and flexibility in freedom. Job mobility in the labor market.
The closing statement noted the tangible improvement in the framework of fiscal policy, government spending management and financial transparency, praising the progress made by the “Etimad” platform in strengthening government financial management. The statement also welcomed the reforms aimed at strengthening the methodology of providing support in social protection programs, stressing the importance of continuing to provide the necessary support to the most affected groups.
On the level of monetary policies, the financial sector and exchange rates, the statement praised the strength of the financial sector and the efforts of the Central Bank of Saudi Arabia in strengthening the regulatory and supervisory frameworks, including programs to support the private sector during the crisis, which contributed to enhancing financial stability. The statement also commended the Capital Market Authority and the National Center for Debt Management with reforms aimed at strengthening stock and bond markets, which provided companies with more options to increase capital and more investment opportunities for savers.
Regarding the participation of Saudi women in the labor market, the statement praised the wide steps taken by the Kingdom in this regard, as it is estimated that the percentage of Saudi women’s participation in the workforce increased by 13 percentage points to more than 33% during the past two years. The statement also welcomed the “Saudi initiative”. Green “and what it will achieve in supporting growth rates, employment and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
For his part, His Excellency the Minister of Finance, Acting Minister of Economy and Planning, Mr.Mohammed bin Abdullah Al-Jadaan, said that the statement confirms the success of the Kingdom’s government in achieving tangible good results within a year which is the most difficult for the whole world, given the repercussions of the Corona pandemic, fluctuations in oil prices, sharp economic fluctuations, the decline in global demand and slowing growth. And other challenges, which the Kingdom’s government has overcome, while continuing to implement the programs, plans and targets of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, which has enabled the Kingdom’s government to implement many economic and structural reforms, which demonstrate the soundness of the efforts made by the financial system in developing the financial sector in the Kingdom, up to Achieving financial sustainability that enhances the durability and strength of the Saudi economy despite all the circumstances and challenges.