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IMPORTS

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IMPORTS TO SAUDI ARABIA


 

  

IMPORTS

Due to the decline in the world’s oil prices and the near completion of the establishment of a modern infrastructure in Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom’s merchandise imports from the rest of the world declined from SR100,349.6 million (U.S. $ 26,759.9 million) in 1980 to SR70,779.9 million (U.S. $18,874.6 million) in 1986. Since 1986 the Kingdom’s imports of goods increased by an annual average rate of about 3.5 percent and amounted to SR87,422.0 million (U.S. $23,312.5 million) in 1994. Table (14) shows the Kingdom’s imports by main commodities for the period from 1989 to 1993. Graph No. 1 shows the Kingdom’s imports from the rest of the world by main commodities in 1993.

TABLE 14 *
THE KINGDOM’S VALUE OF IMPORTS BY MAIN CATEGORY: 1989-1993
(Value in Millions of Saudi Riyals)

1 USD~3.745 SR

CATEGORY 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993
Live animals and animal products 4,392 4,838 5,613 3,771 3,720
Vegetable products 4,558 3,880 3,653 6,484 5,511
Animal & vegetable fats and oils and their cleavage products; prepared edible fats; animal and vegetable waxes 212 403 490 551 400
Prepared foodstuffs; beverages; spirits and vinegar; tobacco 3,461 3,639 4,446 2,420 1,819
Mineral products 757 760 844 916 1,781
Products of the chemical and allied industries 5,274 7,232 8,066 8,398 7,605
Artificial resins and plastic materials; cellulose esters and ethers, and articles thereof: rubber, synthetic rubber, lactic, and articles thereof 2,943 3,518 4,214 3,971 3,989
Raw hides and skins, leather, fur skin, and articles thereof; saddlers and harness; travel goods, handbags & similar containers; articles of gut (other than silkworm gut) 374 358 435 438 418
Wood and articles of wood: wood charcoal: cork and articles of cork; manufacturers of straw, esparto and other platting materials; basket ware and wickerwork 1,088 1,249 1,564 2,040 2,007
Paper making material; paper and paper board and articles thereof 1,349 1,736 1,879 1,940 2,086
Textile and textile articles 7,754 7,947 9,169 9,842 8,272
Footwear, headgear, umbrellas, sunshades, wigs, riding crops and parts thereof; prepared leathers and articles thereof; artificial flowers; articles of human hair; fans 975 895 1,194 1,048 996
Articles of stone, plaster, cement, asbestos, mica and similar materials; ceramic products; glass and glassware 1,666 1,677 7,377 2,314 2,053
Pearls; precious and semi-precious stones; precious metals; rolled precious metals and articles thereof; imitation jewelry; coins 3,848 6,213 2,519 5,911 3,251
Base metals and articles of base metals 6,476 7,830 7,412 11,182 10,650
Machinery and mechanical appliances and parts thereof; electrical equipment and parts thereof 14,557 14,777 21,120 26,322 22,469
Transport equipment and parts thereof 14,640 18,471 22,868 29,911 21,964
Instruments - photographic, cinematographic, measuring, checking, precision, medical, surgical, clocks, watches, musical, sound, television, magnetic devices and parts thereof 2,927 2,836 3,073 3,435 3,339
Arms, ammunition, and parts thereof 21 28 1,937 454 507
Miscellaneous manufactured articles 1,406 1,372 776 2,924 2,456
Works of art; collector’s pieces, and antiques 632 623 284 333 324
Grand Total 79,278 90,282 108,934 124,606 105,616

 Source: Central Department of Statistics, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

 BALANCE OF TRADE

The Kingdom maintained a favorable balance of trade for the period from 1980 to 1994. The Kingdom’s balance of trade has improved noticeably since 1986, when it had a surplus of only SR3.6 billion (U.S.$0.96 billion). During the Gulf Crisis, the Kingdom’s balance of trade recorded a surplus of SR76.2 billion (U.S.$20.3 billion) in 1990 and SR 70.1 billion (U.S.$18.7 billion) in 1991 (see Table 11). This surplus declined to SR63,788.0 million (U.S. $17.0 million) in 1992 and then to SR53,154.1 million (U.S. $14,174.4 million) in 1993. However, the Kingdom’s balance of trade improved during 1994 and recorded a surplus of SR72,167.5 million (U.S. $19,244.7 million).

 

BALANCE OF PAYMENTS

Due to the fall in the Kingdom's oil export revenues in response to an over supply in the international oil markets, Saudi Arabia has been faced with the problem of a current account deficit since the mid 1980s. The balance of payments’ current account deficit during the period 1986-1989 were SR-43 billion (U.S. $11.5 billion), SR-36.6 billion (U.S. $9.8 billion), SR-27.5 billion (U.S. $7.3 billion), and SR-35.7 billion (U.S. $9.5 billion) respectively.

The Desert Storm war, coming at the start of the fifth development plan (1990-1994), had contradictory effects on the Kingdom’s foreign trade and balance of payments. The sharp increase in the value of oil exports at the start of the fifth plan period resulted in an average annual trade balance surplus of SR75.1 billion (about U.S. $20.00 billion) during the period from 1990 to 1993 (see table 11). On the other hand, The substantial cost of the war and the immense outflow of related payments had a substantial negative impact on the overall balance of payments' position. Thus, as table (15) shows, the average annual current account deficits during the years 1990 to 1993 were SR15,6 billion (U.S. $4.2 billion), SR103.3 billion (U.S.27.5 billion), SR78.1 billion (U.S. $20.8 billion) and SR54.7 billion (U.S. $14.6 billion) respectively.

TABLE 15
BALANCE OF PAYMENT
1410/1411 - 1413/1414 H. (1990-1993)
(In Millions of Saudi Riyals)

ITEMS

1410/1411

1990

1411/1412 

1991

1412-1413 

1992

1413-1414 

1993

1.Merchandise Trade (F.O.B.) 85,093 81,093 62,920 71,323
a. Oil Exports (Exchange Bunker Oil) 149,649 163,036 162,116 154,083
b: Other Exports 16,053 15,311 14,082 14,135
(of which Re-exports) (2,414) (2,297) (1,545) 1,525
Imports 80,609 97,254 113,278 96,895
Services and Transfers 10,065 184,410 140,993 126,057
* Receipts 46,435 43,932 41,102 36,032
a. Investment Income 34,452 32,584 27,629 23,250
b. Oil Sector (Bunker Oil) 634 454 491 487
Others 11,349 10,894 12,982 12,295
Payments 147,086 228,342 182,089 162,089
Freight and Insurance (a) 9,673 11,670 11,328 8,721
Oil Sector (b) 4,569 7,243 7,281 8,614
Other Private Service 37,878 42,087 45,511 43,437
Other Govt. Services (a) 52,883 115,859 67,803 42,457
Private Transfers 42,083 51,483 50,172 58,860
Capital Movement and Reserves 15,558 103,317 79,073 54,734
Net oil sector transactions & others (a) 6,979 604 297 5,127
Other (b) 8,579 102,713 78,370 49,607
Average exchange rate (SR per US$) 3.745 3.745 3.745 3.745

Source: Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency/Economic research and statistics.

(a) Including official transfers and contribution or capital subscriptions to international or regional
development agencies and certain government imports.
(b) Including short-term private capital, valuation adjustment, net errors and omissions and
changes in commercial banks, net foreign assets, and official capital and reserves.
 

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 Sources: The Commercial office, Embassy of Saudi Arabia, Washington, D.C. and The Foreign Trade Statistics, Ministry of Finance and National Economy, Central Department of Statistics, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.


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