- Title: Saudi Arabia optimistic about budget gap
- Date: 10th November 2016
- Summary: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA (NOVEMBER 10.2016) (REUTERS) ****WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) NEW ECONOMIC AFFAIRS AND DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE POSING FOR FAMILY PICTURE PHOTOGRAPHERS TAKING PICTURES VARIOUS OF SAUDI DEPUTY CROWN PRINCE MOHAMMED BIN SALMAN STANDING IN MIDDLE COMMITTEE MEMBERS GOING TO CONFERENCE ROOM GCC ECONOMIC AFFAIRS AND DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE HOLDING THEIR FIRST MEETING PRINCE MOHAMMED BIN SALMAN WELCOMING COMMITTEE MEETING IN PROGRESS PRINCE MOHAMMED BIN SALMAN SPEAKING AT MEETING MEMBERS OF COMMITTEE AND DELEGATIONS CLAPPING THEIR HANDS GCC SECRETARY GENERAL UAE MEMBER SEATING BAHRAIN MEMBER SEATING MEDIA LEAVING THE CLOSED SESSION REPORTERS SPEAKING TO NEW SAUDI FINANCE MINISTER (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) SAUDI ARABIAN FINANCE MINISTER, MOHAMMED AL-JADAAN, SAYING: "I am now looking into many files - the budget, contractor payments and other files ... I am very optimistic." ROYAL GUARD (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic)SAUDI ARABIAN FINANCE MINISTER MOHAMMED AL-JADAAN,SAYING: "It's a significant amount of billions (of dollars), the government intends to make all delayed payments (to the private sector) as soon as possible." EXTERIOR OF CONFERENCES PALACE IN RIYADH
- Embargoed: 25th November 2016 17:07
- Keywords: GCC Saudi Arabia oil prices budget
- Location: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA
- City: RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA
- Country: Saudi Arabia
- Topics: Budget/Taxation/Revenue,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA00157V53K7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Saudi Arabian finance minister Mohammed al-Jadaan said on Thursday (November 10) that he was optimistic about efforts to cut a huge state budget deficit caused by low oil prices.
Asked by reporters if the deficit for this year, which is expected to be announced late next month along with the 2017 budget plan, would be lower than originally planned, Jadaan said it was too early to say.
"I am now looking into many files - the budget, contractor payments and other files ... I am very optimistic," said Jadaan, who took over the finance ministry at the end of last month.
The original budget plan for 2016 envisaged a deficit of 326 billion riyals ($87 billion), after a deficit of 367 billion riyals in 2015.
But some local analysts now expect this year's deficit to come in well below that projection, because of drastic cuts in state spending and delays by the government in paying debts that it owes to the private sector, particularly construction firms.
Jadaan, speaking on the sidelines of an economic conference, reiterated that the government intended to make all delayed payments to the private sector "as soon as possible".
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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