Research Briefing | Jun 17, 2021

MENA | Saudi Q1 GDP; Regional inflation and Iran breakthrough

Copy of Copy of Copy of Ipad Frame (51)

Saudi Arabia’s GDP fell 3.0% y/y in Q1 according to newly released data, slightly less than preliminary estimates suggested. The decline was mainly driven by oil output cuts, while non-oil activity expanded by 2.9%, rebounding from 0.8% y/y contraction seen in Q4 last year.

What you will learn:

  • Saudi inflation rose to 5.7% y/y in May from 5.3% y/y in April, but we still expect the rate to ease in H2 as base effects from last year’s VAT hike fade. Meanwhile, Qatar registered a second consecutive positive inflation rate, up to 2.5%, following a sustained period of deflation.
  • The US has lifted some sanctions on Iran’s energy sector in a move characterised as a “good faith approach” by the Biden administration.
  • Despite some progress in the Vienna talks, a full return to the JCPOA is likely to be further complicated with an expected win for hardliner front-runner Ebrahim Raisi in the upcoming presidential elections.

Back to Resource Hub

Related Services

Seoul, South Korea

Post

BoK’s monetary policy to tighten even as hiking cycle ends

Even without rate hikes, central banks' monetary policies can effectively tighten if the nominal neutral rate falls below the policy rate. We expect this will be the case for the Bank of Korea this year, as the gap between the policy rate and the nominal neutral rate widens.

Find Out More

Post

China: Emerging green shoots in Spring, but not out of the woods

We now incorporate a faster recovery from the post-Covid exit wave and raise our 2023 full-year GDP growth forecast to 4.5% (from 4.2% previously).

Find Out More