Freshly released Ministry of Finance figures show that Saudi Arabia posted a $20.8bn surplus in Q2 – by far the highest figure since the ministry began releasing quarterly figures in 2017.

Revenues were up across the board, rising by nearly $25bn to $98.8bn for the quarter. Of this, oil accounted for two thirds of the total with $66.8bn. If there is a cautionary note, it is that expenditure rose by nearly $20bn to $78bn. Subsidies and grants have increased slightly as the government seeks to shield the population from rising global inflation (see main story), while public sector salaries are broadly flat. The biggest increase was from the broad “use of goods and services” category. (CONTINUED - 113 WORDS)