Saudi National Development Fund provides $7.46 billion in national Covid-related support

The Saudi National Development Fund has supported the local economy with more than 28 billion Saudi riyals ($7.46 billion) in funding since the coronavirus pandemic began to help ‘worst hit’ sectors cope to “fluctuations” caused by the health crisis, the state-run Saudi Press Agency reported.

The fund supported health and educational institutions through the initiatives of the Social Development Bank and the Kafala program, and organized the restructuring of loans for small, medium and large medical projects through the Saudi Development Fund industrial, SPA said on Saturday.

“The development system [launched by the NDF] aimed at supporting private sector employment, increasing the skills and financing of individuals and enabling self-employment through the initiatives of the Human Resource Development Fund and the Social Development Bank,” the agency said. .

“The system has also provided support to the agricultural sector by stimulating small and medium enterprises and facilitating the import of agricultural products through the initiatives of the Agricultural Development Fund.”

Saudi Arabia, the largest economy in the Arab world, has unveiled various initiatives to support the local economy since the start of the pandemic in 2020.

They include a 3.7 billion riyal stimulus package to support companies in the industrial sector affected by the pandemic, as well as 50 billion riyals to speed up payments to the private sector.

The kingdom’s central bank has also injected 50 billion riyals into its banking sector to boost liquidity and improve the lending capacity of financial institutions as part of efforts to support the sector amid the pandemic. It also allocated 70 billion riyals to support businesses and deferred some government fees and taxes.

The NDF has also extended its support to sectors such as Hajj and Umrah, sports, supply chain and aviation – which have notably faced “unprecedented and exacerbating repercussions” amid the crisis. canceled flights and closed airports since the outbreak of the pandemic, the SPA said. .

The support provided by the fund covered more than 350,000 people and 36,000 large, medium, small and micro enterprises.

“The National Development Fund and its subsidiaries continue their role in building confidence in the economy by relieving pressure on the state treasury through development financing, acting as an effective tool to deal with economic fluctuations and acting as an engine for the continued growth of the kingdom’s economy to achieve the goals of Saudi Vision 2030,” SPA said.

The NDF, with assets worth 496 billion riyals, was established in 2017 to oversee economic development funding across several ministries in the kingdom.

It oversees the activities of its funds and development banks and coordinates policies aimed at improving their performance and supporting economic priorities in line with Vision 2030, which aims to diversify the kingdom’s economy.

The fund has pumped in more than 690 billion riyals through its subsidiaries since its inception and is “one of the largest development finance funds” in terms of the ratio of assets to gross domestic product in the G20 group, the SPA reported in march.

The fund aims to triple the kingdom’s non-oil GDP to 605 billion riyals by 2030 and contribute more than 570 billion riyals to the kingdom’s real GDP growth.

Updated: September 18, 2022, 7:55 a.m.

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