Saudi Arabia not considering non-dollar oil trade: official

A view of Saudi Aramco's Shaybah oilfield at the Empty Quarter in Saudi Arabia. (Reuters)
Updated 08 April 2019

Saudi Arabia not considering non-dollar oil trade: official

DUBAI: The Saudi Arabian Energy Ministry has rejected the suggestion that it is considering selling oil in currencies other than the traditional US dollar.
In its first public reaction since speculation began last week that the Kingdom might consider pricing oil in other currencies if the Americans enacted legislation aimed at OPEC, the ministry said: “Recent reports claiming that Saudi Arabia is threatening to sell its oil in currencies other than the dollar are inaccurate and do not reflect Saudi Arabia’s position on the matter.
“The Kingdom has been trading its oil in dollars for decades and that has served well its financing and monetary needs. Furthermore, the Kingdom remains committed to be a stabilizing force to energy markets and does not want its key priority to be out at risk, including changes to the financial terms of oil trading relationships around the world.”
The reaction from the ministry - headed by energy minister Khalid Al-Falih who is also the chairman of the world’s biggest oil company Saudi Aramco - will put and end to speculation that the Kingdom intends to react radically to the possible passage of what has been called “NOPEC” laws in the US.
Such a law is opposed by US energy leaders and by the Energy Secretary Rick Perry as potentially destabilizing for world energy markets. A final decision on the law - if it gets passed by the US Congress - would be the responsibility of the administration of Donald Trump, who has not so far indicated his thinking on the matter.


Saudi finance minister reassures public on taxes

Updated 10 December 2019

Saudi finance minister reassures public on taxes

  • Mohammed Al-Jadaan: There will be no more fees and taxes until after the financial, economic and social impacts have been considered carefully
  • The government expects to generate about SR203 billion in taxes this year – more than 20.5 percent higher than the previous year

RIYADH: Saudi finance minister Mohammed Al-Jadaan pledged that there would be no more taxes or fees introduced in the Kingdom until the social and economic impact of such a move had been fully reviewed.

He was speaking at the 2020 Budget Meeting Sessions, organized by the Ministry of Finance and held in Riyadh on Tuesday, where a number of ministers and senior officials gathered following the publication of the budget on Monday evening.

“There will be no more fees and taxes until after the financial, economic and social impacts have been considered carefully, especially in terms of economic competitiveness,” said Al-Jadaan.

The government expects to generate about SR203 billion in taxes this year – more than 20.5 percent higher than the previous year and more than 10 percent higher than the expected budget for this year. 

Most of that increase has come from taxes on goods and services which rose substantially as a result of the improvement in economic activity over the year.

The reassurances from the minister come as the Saudi budget deficit is estimated to widen to about SR187 billion, next year, or about 6.4 percent of GDP.