Riyadh December 8 2022: His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, and Chairman of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs, affirmed that the economic transformation march adopted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's government is going on, and that the positive results achieved so far in accordance with the directives of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques confirm the success of economic and financial reforms aimed at promoting comprehensive economic growth and strengthening the Kingdom's financial position to ensure financial sustainability towards a vibrant society, a prosperous economy and an ambitious nation.
HRH Crown Prince stated that the government aims, through 2023 budget, to prioritize spending on capital projects according to regional and sectoral strategies, in line with the targets of the Kingdom's Vision 2030 and national policies, and that the government continues to implement programs and projects with economic and social returns, in addition to supporting economic diversification and enabling the private sector to improve the business environment, and overcoming obstacles to make it an attractive environment, and to raise economic growth rates for the next year and in the medium term.
His Royal Highness also said, "The economic recovery, financial control initiatives and policies, and the development and efficiency of public finance management contributed to achieving a surplus in the budget, while maintaining the achievement of the main objectives of the Vision, as the surplus is expected to reach about 2.6 percent of the gross domestic product in 2022, stressing that the surpluses achieved in the budget will be directed to enhance government reserves, support national funds, and strengthen the Kingdom's financial position to raise its capabilities to face global shocks and crises.
He explained that the economic and structural reforms being implemented since the launch of the Kingdom's Vision 2030 contributed to improving financial and economic indicators and advancing the march of economic diversification and financial stability, as the Kingdom achieved, until the end of the third quarter of 2022, high rates of real GDP growth, amounting to about 10.2%, and this was clearly reflected in the growth of many economic activities and various non-oil sectors, recording growth rates of 5.8%.
His Royal Highness further said that it is expected that by the end of this year, the GDP growth will reach 8.5%., as this growth was also reflected in the creation of more job opportunities, which contributed to the decline in unemployment rates among citizens to 9.7% during the second quarter of 2022, the lowest during the past 20 years, indicating that more than 2.2 million citizens work in the private sector, the highest in the Kingdom's history.
He also praised the increase in women's economic participation from 17.7% to 35.6%.
HRH Crown Prince also affirmed that the Saudi citizen is the greatest asset that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia possesses for success, as the role of the citizen is pivotal in comprehensive and sustainable economic development, contributing directly to accomplishing achievements and moving forward in various fields and promising sectors.
He stated that the government continues its efforts to strengthen the social support and protection system for citizens, given its importance in providing a decent standard of living for all citizens, especially the lower-income groups, pointing out that all Vision's programs aim to enhance the quality of life of citizens, including increasing employment opportunities and improving the level of income, as well as developing the infrastructure of cities, and providing all services in accordance with the highest international standards.
His Highness also indicated that the state's budget for 2023 comes as a continuation of achieving the goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, as it focuses on accelerating the achievement of results, as the government has succeeded in implementing many supportive initiatives and structural reforms to enable economic transformation and involve the private sector in the transformation journey.
HRH Crown Prince also explained that strategies, programs, initiatives and procedures are being carried out periodically to ensure their effectiveness, and correct their course whenever the need arises.
His Royal Highness stated that the government, in addition to spending in general, carries out a number of major initiatives that will contribute to strengthening the role of the private sector and attracting foreign investments that will help achieve the aspirations and ambitions of the Kingdom's Vision 2030, based on the strengths that Allah the Almighty has bestowed upon this country ranging from a distinguished strategic location to a pioneering investment power, and an Arab and Islamic depth.
HRH Crown Prince pointed out to the launch of the national initiative for global supply chains, which consolidates the Kingdom's role as a major link, enhancing the efficiency of global supply chains that will contribute to overcoming challenges affecting the efficiency and growth of the global economy.
He also affirmed that the Kingdom will continue during the next year and in the medium and long term in increasing the attractiveness of the Kingdom's economy as a base for domestic and foreign investments and diversifying the economy by developing promising sectors.
His Royal Highness indicated that the Kingdom's Vision 2030 focuses on adopting huge reforms in various fields. A vital and sustainable industrial sector that is able to compete and relies on exports achieves the Vision's targets, he said, adding that, the national strategy for industry was launched with the aim to develop the industrial business environment and diversify its base, enhancing the Kingdom’s international trade, strengthening the access of national exports to global markets, developing and promoting innovation and knowledge. His Royal Highness said that the strategy is expected to achieve a huge positive impact on the Kingdom’s economy, as it has identified more than 800 investment opportunities worth one trillion riyals, and is working to double the value of industrial exports to reach 557 billion riyals, and the value of additional investments in the sector reaching 1.3 trillion riyals, and an increase in exports of advanced technical products by about 6 times, in addition to the creation of tens of thousands of high-value qualitative jobs.
His Royal Highness also highlighted the important role and efforts being made by the Kingdom towards its food security through its early approach, recognized as successful and excellent during geopolitical tensions and the accompanying consequences and pressures on food security in all countries of the world, as the food security strategy of the Kingdom was characterized by its internal integration and stability during a period when the world is witnessing shortage of flow of food supplies, the effects of climate change and scarcity of water resources as a result of geopolitical conditions.
Concluding his statement, HRH Crown Prince cited the government's success in addressing the risks arising from geopolitical changes and limiting their economic and social impacts as an evidence of the strength of the Kingdom's economy in facing urgent challenges.
His Royal Highness also affirmed the Kingdom's pioneering role in stabilizing the energy markets, in the framework of seeking to contribute to strengthening the stability and growth of the global and domestic economy.