Author: RASHID HASSANWed, 2017-12-20 03:00ID: 1513722340930396700
RIYADH: Saudi business chiefs on Tuesday welcomed the Kingdom’s record budget.
Council of Saudi Chambers (CSC) Chairman Ahmed bin Sulaiman Al-Rajihi said the spending plans reflected steady improvement in the broader economy.
Citizens are also set to benefit from an allocation of SR53 billion to municipality services, contained in Tuesday’s budget, said CSC Secretary-General Saud Al-Mishari.
That represents an increase of about SR4 billion on the expected spending in 2017, according to budget data released on Tuesday.
The government has already announced plans to introduce a new monthly household allowance known as the Citizen’s Account aimed at providing social welfare to lower-income families.
The budgetary impact will be partially offset by revenue from the introduction of value-added tax (VAT) that comes into force in 2018 as well as other revenue-raising measures.
Ibrahim Al-Quayid, a founding member of the National Society for Human Rights (NSHR), said: “This is indeed a budget of welfare and prosperity for the people of Saudi Arabia as well as expatriates."
Yesterday’s budget had a strong focus on healthcare, education, social development, infrastructure, housing and transportation, analysts noted.
Mohammad Al-Khunaizi, a senior member of the Shoura Council, said the budget reflected the goals of the country’s economic diversification plan contained in the Vision 2030 as well as the more recent crackdown on corruption.
“I believe that there will be more strict supervision and efficiency in spending money in all government projects now,” he said.
Fahd Al-Sammari, secretary-general of the King Abdul Aziz Research and Archive Center (Darah) said the budget reaffirmed the success of ongoing diversification plans aimed at reducing the Kingdom’s dependence on oil revenues.
Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: saudi budget 2018Saudi Arabiarelated_nodes: ‘Saudi Arabia has almost double international rate of smartphones’Prince Fahd bin Mishaal elected vice-chairman of Saudi Aviation Club
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