All publications by tag «ARABIA»
Russia’s readiness to back an extension of the supply cuts agreement between Opec and its allies until the end of 2018 has prompted oil ministers to seek widespread support for the proposal, Opec’s secretary-general said on Thursday.
Nasser said vast opportunities for collaboration between companies from Saudi Arabia and Russia are created by both the Kingdom’s existing economic pillars and the development and diversification envisaged by Saudi Vision 2030.
Net foreign assets at the central bank shrank by $8.5 billion from the previous month to $492.9 billion in April, reaching their lowest level since 2011, central bank figures showed on Sunday. They fell 13.9 percent from a year earlier.
The recent steps to increase the transparency of fiscal policy through the publication of the Fiscal Balance Program and the First Quarter Budget Report are very welcome. This greater transparency will help private businesses and investors better plan their investment and employment decisions.
Saudi Arabia’s conventional approach to market management is no longer working: crude has fallen back below $50 a barrel, US shale oil output is again on the rise and Saudi-led Opec, if anything, is worse off than when it agreed the supply deal back in November, having cut volumes for little upside on price.
Directors welcomed the ambitious reform goals announced by the authorities in Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program, and underscored the importance of clear prioritization and sequencing of the planned reforms to reduce implementation risks and give the economy time to adjust. They supported the authorities’ plan to increase the role of the private sector in the economy by focusing on privatization and public-private partnerships, improve the business environment, develop local capital markets, encourage FDI, and support small and medium enterprises. Directors noted that continued labor market and education reforms are needed to encourage private sector employment of Saudi nationals and increase labor force participation of women.
The fund’s half-yearly fiscal monitor report shows that in the past three years a hefty budget surplus in Saudi Arabia has been turned into a deficit of more than 20% of GDP – double the shortfalls seen in the UK and the US during the worst of the global slump of 2008-09.
In the first half of 2015, Saudi Arabia exported on average 4.4 million barrels per day (b/d) of crude oil to seven major trading partners in Asia, making up more than half of Saudi Arabia's total crude oil exports over that period. Even as global crude oil prices fell in 2014 and 2015, Saudi Arabia increased production and kept its export levels high, enabling it to maintain its market share in these countries. However, long-term trends within Saudi Arabia's energy sector may reduce its global crude oil market share.
The rebound in oil prices has wide-reaching implications. For one, it certainly affects the situation in Russia and the Ukraine. As the price of oil stabilizes, the Russian government has become more comfortable with its fiscal situation, despite the fact that low oil prices and Western sanctions have sunk the country into a recession that will likely last through next year.
The United States remained the world's top producer of petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbons in 2014, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration estimates. U.S. hydrocarbon production continues to exceed that of both Russia and Saudi Arabia, the second- and third-largest producers, respectively. For the United States and Russia, total petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbon production, in energy content terms, is almost evenly split between petroleum and natural gas. Saudi Arabia's production, on the other hand, heavily favors petroleum.