Riyadh, The overall merchandise exports of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia increased by 10.8% in Q1 2021 compared to Q1 2020. The value of exports amounted to 212.4 billion riyals in Q1 2020, 20.7 billion riyals higher than in Q1 2021. This increase originated mainly from oil exports, which rose by 9.5 billion riyals (6.6%) in the same period. The share of oil exports in total exports decreased from 74.6% (Q1 2020) to 71.8% (Q1 2021). Compared to the previous quarter (Q4 2020), total merchandise exports increased by 32.4 billion riyals (+18.0%).
According to the General Authority for Statistics (GASTAT), non-oil exports increased by 23.1% year-on-year in Q1 2021, raising up to 59.9 billion riyals from 48.7 billion riyals in Q1 2020. The share of non-oil exports in total exports increased from 25.4% (Q1 2020) to 28.2% (Q1 2021). 'Plastics and Rubber and Articles Thereof', with a share of 33.3% in non-oil merchandise exports, increased by 8.2% and 'Products of the Chemical or Allied Industries', with a share of 27.2% in non-oil merchandise exports, increased by 8.3% from Q1 2020. Non-oil exports increased compared to the previous quarter (Q4 2021) by 1.4 billion riyals (+2.4%).
Merchandise imports increased by 4.0% (5.3 billion riyals) in Q1 2021. The value of imports amounted to 137.7 billion riyals in Q1 2021 compared to 132.3 billion riyals in Q1 2020. 'Machinery and Mechanical Appliances; Electrical Equipment', with a share of 20.1% in non-oil merchandise exports, increased by 3.7% and 'Vehicles and Associated Transport Equipment', with a share of 16.4% in non-oil merchandise exports, decreased by 5.7% from Q1 2020. Imports, however, increased compared to the previous quarter (Q4 2020), by 0.5 billion riyals (+0.3%).
The ratio of non-oil exports to imports increased to 43.5% in Q1 2021 from 36.8% in Q1 2020 as a result of a higher increase in non-oil exports (23.1%) than in imports (4.0%) over that period.
In Q1 2021, exports to China amounted to 38.9 billion riyals, making this country the main destination for exports of Saudi Arabia. Japan and India followed next with 22.4 billion and 19.4 billion riyals, respectively. South Korea, United Arab Emirates, were the other countries that ranked in the top 5 destinations. Exports of Saudi Arabia to those 5 countries amounted to 110.2 billion riyals, accounting for 51.9% of the total exports.
Imports from China amounted to 28.5 billion riyals in Q1 2021, making this country the main origin for imports of Saudi Arabia. U.S.A and United Arab Emirates, followed next with imports of 15.9 billion and 12.4 billion riyals, respectively. India, Germany, were the other countries that ranked in the top 5 countries for imports. Imports of Saudi Arabia from those 5 countries amounted to 70.9 billion riyals, accounting for 51.5% of the total imports.
As many as 39.7 billion riyals of imports (28.9% of total imports) entered the Kingdom from Jeddah Islamic Sea Port in Q1 2021. Among the other major ports of entry for the imports were King Abdulaziz Port (18.3%), King Khalid International Airport (12.8%), Bat'ha (7.0%), and King Fahad Airport (6.9%). Those five ports together accounted for 73.8% of the total merchandise imports of the Kingdom.
Source: Saudi Press Agency