The latest rating action also includes raising the country’s ceiling rating to AA-, which will open up the possibility for a number of Saudi corporates to be upgraded.
“At today’s oil prices, Saudi Arabia is earning around $1bn a day from oil exports, reinforcing an already strong external balance sheet and creating a buffer against future shocks,” says Charles Seville, associate director of Fitch’s sovereign ratings team.
Fitch said that despite oil contributing 90 per cent of central government revenue, a fall in prices would have to be very steep to threaten its creditworthiness.
The government’s cautious budget means the country could sustain oil prices falling to $30 per barrel for several years without this having a major impact on government spending.
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