RIYADH: The Saudi Central Bank, also known as SAMA, reported a 3.4 percent increase in total assets to SR1.82 trillion ($490 billion) in September, up from SR1.76 trillion in August, according to official data.
The SAMA monthly statistical bulletin indicated that the total assets in July and June were SR1.78 trillion and SR1.83 trillion, respectively.
However, in September, the central bank’s total assets declined by SR168.4 billion compared to the same period last year.
The report also revealed that SAMA’s investments in foreign securities decreased 11.5 percent year-on-year in September, amounting to SR997.9 billion.
Moreover, SAMA’s deposits with banks abroad amounted to SR376.29 billion, rising 7 percent compared to September last year.
The central bank had assets worth SR256.53 billion in foreign currencies and gold. At the same time, cash in the vault amounted to SR24.87 billion in the month under review.
The report further noted that banks operating in Saudi Arabia witnessed a 22 percent rise in their aggregate profits before zakat and taxes to SR7.14 billion in September, compared to SR5.84 billion in the same month of 2022.
SAMA’s monthly statistical bulletin covers the results of banks listed on the Saudi Stock Exchange and some foreign banks operating in the Kingdom.
According to the report, the aggregate assets of these banks annually grew 9.43 percent to SR3.90 trillion in September.
On the other hand, deposits in these banks also increased 8.34 percent to SR2.45 trillion compared to September 2022.
Highlighting the growth of the private sector in Saudi Arabia, the SAMA report indicated that loans provided to privately operated firms in September increased by 9.33 percent year-on-year to SR2.47 trillion.
In August, SAMA Gov. Ayman Al-Sayari revealed that Saudi Arabia is the most prominent Islamic finance market in the world, with total assets exceeding SR3.1 trillion.
He added that Saudi Arabia is the largest sovereign sukuk issuer in the world.
According to Al-Sayari, the total value of the Islamic finance sector currently stands at SR11.2 trillion, displaying an average growth of 9.6 percent over the last three years.
“Saudi Arabia has a deep-rooted and historical relationship with Islamic finance. It houses the largest Islamic finance market in the world, with total Islamic assets across sectors exceeding SR3.1 trillion. The Islamic banking sector alone accounts for 33 percent of the global Islamic bank assets,” Al-Sayari said at the time.