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Saudi Finance Minister: Significant Progress in Implementing Economic Reforms | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Saudi minister of finance Mohammed al-Jadaan gestures during the 2017 budget news conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia December 22, 2016. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

Riyadh- In a speech at the Saudi Investment Forum hosted by J.P. Morgan in New York on Tuesday, Minister of Finance Mohammed al-Jadaan lauded the Kingdom’s economic policy and its pivotal role in achieving the Saudi Vision 2030 in the light of the remarkable transformation witnessed by the Kingdom. He drew attention to the comprehensive reforms in various sectors in the Kingdom, including modernization and diversification of the economy in order to reduce dependence on oil.

Jadaan said the Vision represents a very clear roadmap for the Kingdom’s destination.

The finance minister stated that the business community in the Kingdom has begun to reap the fruits of these reforms through a more stable working environment and greater confidence for investors.

This is evidenced by the successful issuance of international and local debt securities in the Kingdom, he said, adding that the initial offering of international sukuk (Islamic bond) in April attracted great attention from international investors with an over-subscription reaching more than $33 billion against the actual issuance of $9 billion, which is the largest offering for sukuk in the world.

He stated that there has been significant progress achieved by the Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program of 2020 towards the Kingdom’s stated goal – a balanced budget through financial reform.

“The steps being taken by the Kingdom are not merely an austerity, but rather a focus on raising the efficiency of expenditure and supporting the purchasing power of low and middle income segment of the Saudi society through the ‘Citizen’s Account’ in order to assist them in addressing correction initiatives of energy price, in addition to supporting the private sector,” he added.

Jadaan unveiled plans to further deepen and expand Saudi capital markets. “We will move ahead with the privatization program and will continue to encourage the growth of private businesses so as to achieve ambitious goals,” the minister concluded.