A Saudi bank reported the country’s current account surplus was set to rise around 33% of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2012 from 27.8% of GDP in 2011.
The Saudi American Bank Group (SAMBA) said in its quarterly report on Saudi Arabia that the fiscal surplus will surge from 14.8% of GDP to 19.9% in 2012 before dropping to 14.2% in 2013.
The report further added that strong oil prices will balloon Saudi Arabia’s net foreign assets by $356 billion during the next two years to just below $1 trillion – an all-time high figure for the desert kingdom.
Saudi Arabia’s foreign assets soared to just under $100 billion through 2011 thanks to high oil prices.
The report suggested that the assets controlled by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency could peak $926 billion at the end of 2013, accounting for nearly 144% of the Kingdom’s projected GDP of $642 billion in 2013.
Saudi Arabia got an all time boost in foreign assets thanks to higher oil prices and production. The country’s foreign assets skyrocket by nearly SR352 billion ($93.85bn) in 2011 to a record high of SR2,057 billion ($548.46bn) before hitting another record of SR2,154 billion ($574.32bn) at the end of March this year.
The whopping rises are the biggest annual increases in the foreign assets since 2008, when they surged to SR513 billion ($136.78bn) mainly because of a 50% rise in crude prices that allowed the largest Arab economy to record its highest fiscal surplus of SR580 billion ($154.65bn).
The report highlighted that the last year’s increase was also more than double the assets growth of around SR135 billion ($36bn) through 2010, when they ended the year at SR1,705 billion ($454.61bn) compared with SR1,570 billion ($418.61bn) at the end of 2009.
Saudi Arabia widened its fiscal surplus to nearly SR307 billion in 2011 from thanks to a surge in oil prices along with one million bpd increase in the kingdom’s crude production. The current account surplus also shot up to $156 billion from $69 billion during the same period.