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US Treasury Dept releases Saudi debt holdings

17th May 2016
US Treasury Dept releases Saudi debt holdings

By Kasim Ileri

 

WASHINGTON (AA): The Treasury Department on Monday released Saudi Arabia’s holdings of U.S. debt, for the first time in four decades.

The Kingdom’s holdings stood at $116.8 billion as of March, according to data the agency disclosed in response to a Freedom of Information Act request submitted by Bloomberg News.

Saudi Arabia’s holdings peaked at $123.6 billion in January, according to the data.

The Kingdom ranks 13th among countries holding American securities, compared to the China at the top of the list with $1.3 trillion, followed by Japan with $1.1 trillion.

Other Gulf states holding massive amounts of U.S debt include the United Arab Emirates with $62.5 billion, Kuwait with $31.4 billion and Oman with $15.9 billion.

Under a special arrangement following the 1973 Arab crude oil embargo, Saudi Arabia’s holdings are not listed separately but lumped together under the debt holdings list of Asian Oil Exporters in the U.S. Securities held by Foreign Residents Report that is released monthly.

The Treasury Department report comes as Saudi Arabia deals with fiscal challenges during a period of prolonged low crude prices.

[Photo: US Department of Treasury headquarters Washington D.C/Creative Commons]

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