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Wed 18 Sep 2019 01:48 PM

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Aramco drone attacks had 'zero' impact on Saudi economy, says minister

Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan says Gulf kingdom will continue to spend 'as we need'

Aramco drone attacks had 'zero' impact on Saudi economy, says minister
Saudi Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan. (FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP/Getty Images)

Attacks that slashed half of Saudi Arabia’s oil output had “zero” impact on the kingdom’s revenues, according to Finance Minister Mohammed al-Jadaan.

Jadaan told Bloomberg TV in Riyadh on Wednesday that there was no impact on the Saudi economy and the country would continue to spend “as we need” on defence.

“We are back online, so the interruption in terms of economy, in terms of revenue, is zero,” he said. Saudi oil authorities “have used, as we mentioned, our reserves.”

Saudi Aramco said late Tuesday it had revived 41 percent of capacity at the key crude-processing complex just days after devastating aerial attacks that wrecked vital equipment and rocked global energy markets.

Government revenue and the Saudi economy still heavily rely on crude exports despite intensified diversification efforts over the past few years, so the attack had the potential to hobble the government’s fiscal plans.

Jadaan said the country’s debt issuance plans remain unchanged after the attacks.

He also reiterated the kingdom’s commitment to sell a stake in Aramco in the next 12 months.