Saudi Arabia’s trade surplus slipped by nearly $40bn in 2019 as its oil-dependent economy felt the pressure of lower oil prices. Nevertheless, the kingdom still accrued a huge $120bn surplus, which was considerably more than the annual surpluses achieved during 2015-17 (see chart 1).

The kingdom enjoyed a late-2019 export revenue bounce as crude export volumes were hiked to compensate for outages following the 14 September Abqaiq attack. But with oil markets suffering from coronavirus concerns, the early 2020 picture is much more subdued. (CONTINUED - 475 WORDS)