Saudi Banks Capital, Reserves Jump 6.3% in 2017

Thursday, 6 September, 2018 - 13:15
Riyadh- Shujaa al-Bogmi

The 54th SAMA Annual Report has proven the stability of the financial sector in Saudi Arabia, marking a 6.3 percent growth in the local banks' capitals and reserves in 2017. The report reviews the economic and financial developments in the kingdom during the during 2017.

SAMA Governor Dr. Ahmed AlKholifey mentioned that the Saudi economy witnessed a number of positive indicators. Most notably, the non-oil sector GDP recorded a positive growth of 1.05 percent. The current account registered a surplus of SAR57.1 billion in 2017, against a deficit of SAR89.4 billion in 2016.

He added that the banking sector achieved outstanding performance indicators. Total assets of commercial banks grew by 2.2 percent to over SAR2 trillion. Bank capital and reserves went up by 6.3 percent to SAR318 billion.

The average capital adequacy ratio (Basel Standard) stood at 20.4 percent, which would support the resilience of the financial sector and its capability to withstand financial crises, AlKholifey continued.

The Governor mentioned that SAMA continuously seeks to develop the infrastructure of payment systems in Saudi Arabia to enable domestic banks to provide comprehensive payment instruments for individuals as well as commercial and public sectors, such as launching a number of significant projects that aimed at enhancing the e-payment infrastructure in Saudi Arabia and stimulating the engagement of the banking system.

These updates coincide with the time when the Financial Sector Development Program has become a significant step towards developing the local capital market and placing it among the top ten financial markets, globally.

Through its first pillar, the program works on empowering financial institutions to support the growth of the private sector. Through its second pillar, it seeks to develop an advanced financial market. The program encourages through its third pillar reinforcing and enabling the financial planning.

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