SAUDI ARABIAN MARKET
Saudi Arabia Macroeconomic Developments
• Saudi Arabia announced the resumption of international flights and the reopening of land and sea borders, effective January 3. Non-Saudi citizens arriving from countries where the COVID-19 variant strain has been detected will still face travel restrictions.
• The Saudi economy grew 1.8 percent in Q3 2020 relative to the previous quarter but remains down 4.6 percent YoY. The General Authority for Statistics’ (GAStat) full GDP report showed the leading sectors QoQ were wholesale & retail trade (+19.7 percent), community and social services (+11.5 percent), agriculture & fishing (+11.5 percent), and transportation & storage (+8.7 percent). Petroleum refining (-18.4 percent) and petroleum crude & natural gas (-7.3 percent) saw the steepest sectoral declines in Q3.
• Saudi Arabia’s imports of U.S. goods rose 3.8 percent during October to reach SAR4.1 billion ($1.1 billion). Saudi exports to the U.S. meanwhile declined 21.6 percent during October as U.S. demand for foreign oil remained low. China remains Saudi Arabia’s top trading partner while the U.S. remains a top 10 export market for the Kingdom and the second largest source of Saudi imports.