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Sun 17 May 2009 11:26 AM

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Saudi Central Bank denies selling foreign assets

Bank governor says kingdom is tapping its reserves to keep the economy going. 

Saudi Arabia's central bank governor said on Sunday the world's top oil exporter was not selling foreign assets and expected good growth in non-oil sectors this year.

"No we are not," Muhammad Al Jasser told reporters when asked if Saudi Arabia was selling foreign assets.

He added that Saudi Arabia was tapping its reserves to expand its budget as it faces a period of lower oil prices.

"Now we need to keep our economy going on all engines. In order to do that, you have to use some of your reserves," he said.

Jasser declined to specify whether the Saudi economy was likely to contract this year as OPEC oil producers slash output. (Reuters)

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