Minister of Finance Dr. Ibrahim Al-Assaf addressed the 9th meeting of the International Monetary and Financial Committee of the Board of Governors of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Washington DC yesterday, convened under the title ‘The Global Economy and Financial Markets: Sustaining the Recovery’. Dr. Al-Assaf affirmed that the Kingdom’s sound parameters and appropriate economic policies had enhanced the Saudi economy, which last year showed a growth rate of six percent with a low level of inflation and a surplus in both foreign accounts and the general budget.
Dr. Al-Assaf went on to describe recent regulations in Saudi Arabia, such as the capital markets system, new rules for insurance, and taxation on companies that is aimed at strengthening the private sector. Referring to the situation in the Arab world, he commented that despite the negative effect of the security situation, most Arab states maintained appropriate growth levels last year; he nevertheless called for reform of economic policies. Although recovery of the global economy, he said, now seems evident, he urged greater efforts to deal with the challenges that are hindering the growth needed.
Meanwhile, Dr. Al-Assaf met yesterday U.S. Secretary of the Treasury John Snow; and also with Pakistani Minister of Finance Shaukat Aziz.