Saudi Gazette – The non-oil revenues, which went up from SR126 billion last year to SR163 billion this year, will help cover up the income drop resulting from the sharp fall of the oil prices by about 48 percent during 2015, Minister of Economy and Planning Adel Fakeih has said.

He was talking at a press conference organized by the Ministry of Culture and Information in Riyadh on Monday following the announcement of the general budget.

“The oil revenues have dropped by about 23 percent while income from non-oil exports has increased by about 30 percent,” he said.

Fakeih said the expenditure of some government departments increased remarkably during the past four years going up sometimes to more than 40 percent over their approved budgets.

“The Council of Economic and Development Affairs has adopted a number of decisions aimed at rationalizing expenditure which rose by about 15 percent in the new year’s budget,” he said.

Fakeih said the budget support provision of SR183 billion which was created this year would give flexibility to the government to deal with the sharp fluctuations of the oil prices.

“Next year’s budget will witness the continuation of the administrative and restructure reforms in economy and finance,” he said.

Fakeih said a number of reforms will also be introduced in the private sector with a view to boosting the process of privatization.

“We will adopt the best international practices in government financial accounts and will establish a special unit for the public debts in the Ministry of Finance,” he said.

Fakeih said the expected growth for the next year is about 3.3 percent while inflation will only be around 2.2 percent.

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