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Saudi Arabia Must Review Its Oil Subsidies, Former Adviser Says

Saudi Arabia will need to reduce fuel subsidies that are becoming an ever-greater fiscal burden as its population grows, a former adviser to the country’s oil minister said.

The world’s biggest exporter of crude has a domestic fuel subsidy bill exceeding 162 billion riyals ($43 billion) a year, according to Mohammad Al-Sabban, an independent Saudi-based economist and energy consultant. Citigroup Inc. said in a report Sept. 4 that the kingdom may need to import oil by 2030 if its domestic crude use continues to outpace gains in production.