Dec. 23--RIYADH -- Saudi Arabia is predicted to achieve a budget surplus of nearly SR259.5 billion in the fiscal year 1434-1435H (2013), local media said quoting a report by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
According to the IMF report, Saudi total revenues are poised to reach SR1.26 trillion ($335 billion) whereas total spending is to touch SR996 billion ($266 billion).
The Kingdom's budget realized the biggest surplus in its history in 2012 (1433-1434H) where revenues stood at SR1.24 trillion and spending at SR873 billion, or a surplus of SR384 billion, the media said.
Based on the IMF estimates, the Kingdom is prepared to continue achieving surpluses until the year 2017. Total financial surpluses are predicted to accumulate SR842 billion in the period covering 2014-2017, the IMF report said.
The oil revenues reportedly averaged more than 90 percent of the Kingdom's total income in the last three years. Oil revenues formed 90.4 percent, 92.5 percent and 91.8 percent of the total revenues in 2010, 2011 and 2012, respectively, the report said.
The quantities of oil produced in the Kingdom in the current year are not expected to witness tangible changes compared to the previous year (2012). Despite the fact that oil prices registered a record level in the first quarter of 2012 as high as $120 per barrel (Brent), however, oil prices were more stabilized in 2013 and averaged at $111.9 per barrel, the report said.
Based on earlier data released by the Ministry of Finance, Saudi budget is projected to achieve a fiscal surplus totaling SR300 billion in the current fiscal year (2013). Total spending is estimated to reach SR820 billion in the fiscal year 1434-1435H (2013), the report said.
Last month, a financial expert said Saudi budget is poised to achieve a surplus of SR266 billion in the current year (2013) and the Kingdom is prepared to continue achieving surpluses in years to come as long as oil price remains above $100 per barrel.
Khalid Jamal, CEO of EFG-Hermes (Saudi Arabia), said oil price is expected to hover around $110 per barrel by the end of 2013 but possibly be negatively affected if the United States reduces the quantitative easing policy it currently adopts.