Saudi nonoil exports reach SR17bn in June

Saudi nonoil exports reach SR17bn in June
Updated 11 September 2013

Saudi nonoil exports reach SR17bn in June

Saudi nonoil exports reach SR17bn in June

Saudi Arabia’s external trade in June realized SR17.1 billion of export revenue, leaping over last year's figures by 6.4 percent. This came despite the 9 percent decrease in tonnage which recorded 3.8 megatons. Imports, on the other hand, grew in value by 0.2 percent over the previous year, amounting to SR50.21 billion. Volume-wise, imports receded by 3.4 percent Y/Y to 6 megatons. The appreciating returns from exports indicate that prices are still supportive, according to a Saudi Economic Review released by the National Commercial Bank.
Saudi nonoil exports are in line with last year's trend which also moderately grew in June before it dropped in July and August. By export category, plastics still dominate nonoil exports by 31.4 percent, generating SR5.4 billion. They surged by 22.7 percent compared to the same period last year. Chemical products, which make up 31.1 percent of nonoil exports fell by 10.8 percent Y/Y to SR5.3 billion. Transport equipment has been gaining traction since the beginning of the year, expanding to constitute 14 percent of nonoil exports and surging by a staggering 67.7 percent compared to last year. It reached SR2.4 billion in value. This might be due to a transition from base metals into more processed goods, or a change in the category's definition, the NCB report said.
Base metals, which make up 5.4 percent of nonoil exports rose by 4.4 percent Y/Y, totaling SR0.92 billion. By Destination, 13.3 percent of non-oil ex-ports headed to the UAE. The value of exports went up by 38.9% Y/Y, registering SAR2.3 billion. China received 12.9 percent of the exports advancing by 17.9 percent over last year to record SR2.2 billion. Bahrain, for the first time, took over Singapore as the third largest trade partner. It received 8.2 percent of exports, surging by 160.3 percent over last June, marking SR1.4 billion.
Nonoil imports continued a mildly downward sloping trend that started in March. This limited major increases over last year's figures. By import category, machinery and electrical equipment, which make up 25.8 percent of nonoil imports decreased by 4.1 percent, settling at SR12.9 billion. Transport equipment, which occupies 18.3 percent of the imports made SR9.2 billion, an increase of 12.2 percent. Base metals make up 13.5 percent of nonoil imports. It re-lapsed by 5.5 percent Y/Y, registering SR6.8 billion. By origin, the US is home of 14.9 percent of nonoil imports. It surpassed China since last year to exponentially grow by 20.7 percent. About 14.9 percent of June's nonoil imports total balance was allocated for US imports which realized SR7.4 billion. China comes as a close second with 14.5 percent of imports allocation. Imports of Chinese nonoil imports rose by 9.3 percent Y/Y, recording SR7.2 billion. Germany is the third largest importer to the Kingdom with accounting for 6.4 percent of imports allocation. German imports shrunk by 11.1 percent in comparison to June of 2012, the NCB report said.
Settled letters of credit (LCs) in the month of July grew annually by 1 percent to SR22.7 billion. The overall growth was affected by negative growth in machinery and building materials by 14 percent and 26.5 percent, respectively. It was counterbalanced by a solid 23.6 percent growth in demand for motor vehicles. The report said open LCs for July confirmed the same direction as it increased annually by 2.4 percent, a total of SR17.2 billion. Motor vehicles rose by 30.2 percent, while machinery and building materials tumbled by 33.6 percent and 29 percent, respectively.