Saudi Arabia has unveiled its 2017 budget which projects an increase in spending to boost growth, while at the same time projecting the budget deficit to fall by 36% in real terms.

The 2017 budget “represents an important milestone in the economic development of the kingdom,” the Ministry of Finance said in its budget statement, as it was drawn up in line with Saudi Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program (NTP), which essentially are a roadmap intended to wean the kingdom away from dependence on oil revenues and diversify its economy. Yet non-oil growth this year is set to fall both in nominal and real terms. (CONTINUED - 2021 WORDS)