Saudi economists and businesspeople have welcomed the government’s decision to cut trade tariffs on a number of products, saying it will boost the country’s competitiveness in the world economy.
The reductions form part of the agreements reached with the World Trade Organization (WTO) – the body which seeks to regulate global trade.
They said that the reduction and exemption of customs tariffs on 692 commodities would be welcomed by business worldwide.
Saudi Arabia is considered the largest consumer market in the Mideast.
Dr Abdul Aziz Ismail Daghstani, an economic analyst, said this step would encourage companies, businessmen and exporters from various parts of the world, to export their products and services into the Saudi market.
He said businessmen and importers usually look for active markets where they can trade. So far, the Kingdom has reduced the customs tariff on 20 commodities by eight percent to 7.6 percent.
This includes perfumes, pesticides and anti-oxidation products.
The reduced tariff also applies to 13 plastic products, with reductions from 11.9 percent to 9.2 percent.
Essam Khalifa, a Saudi economic researcher, said the decision has significant economic implications and sends a clear message about the Kingdom’s determination to abide by WTO agreements