VAT hike aims to shore up Saudi’s finances amid low risk of public resistance

VAT hike aims to shore up Saudi’s finances amid low risk of public resistance

**Written and disseminated among select contacts on May 12**

Saudi Arabia announced a series of measures on Monday – including a three-fold hike in VAT from July – to address a sharp deterioration in its financial position. A policy response to the twin crises of lower oil prices and the global coronavirus pandemic was inevitable, but the austerity measures are far-reaching and will hit Saudis at a time when many businesses are already struggling amid severely restricted economic activity.

Rachna Uppal | Senior Analyst | r.uppal@castlereagh.net

VAT hike aims to shore up Saudi’s finances amid low risk of public resistance

Saudi ports: Bigger private sector role in development, overcapacity risk looms

**Written and disseminated among select contacts on May 5**

Increasing private sector investments into Saudi port developments reflect the big potential of the maritime and logistics sector, but there is a risk that capacity may end up exceeding global demand. The government has improved regulations and set up sizeable investment funds for strategic projects to attract foreign players, but current market conditions may deter or impact investments.

Daniel Moshashai | Regional Analyst Infrastructure & Geopolitics | d.moshashai@castlereagh.net

Can Saudi container ports demand keep up with capacity?

Can Saudi container ports demand keep up with capacity?

Daniel Moshashai
Over the last decade the volume of container throughput handled at Saudi ports has nearly doubled, due in large part to privatisation, regulatory changes and high-tech equipment. With ever more attention directed towards capturing Red Sea trade flows, Riyadh’s port development objectives are part and parcel of its broader goal of diversification. However, a closer look at the port story shows inconsistent growth and an uncertain future, leading to concerns of overcapacity.