Saudi Arabia imported 56,700 tonnes of tobacco products in 2014, at a cost of SAR4.1 billion, new data shows.
The kingdom’s imports of cigarettes totalled SAR3.9bn or 38,700 tonnes in 2014 from SAR3.6bn and 38,500 tonnes recorded in 2013, signalling an increase of nine per cent.
Saudi Arabia’s imports of cigarettes rank 19th among the kingdom’s top 50 imports, Al-Eqtisadiah says in a report.
Approximately 94 per cent of Saudi Arabia’s cigarettes come from three countries: Germany, Turkey and Switzerland, at a total cost of SAR3.7bn.
Germany alone accounts for 64 per cent or SAR2.5bn of Saudi Arabia’s total imports of cigarettes followed by Turkey (15.5 per cent or SAR606bn) and Switzerland (14.8 per cent or SAR579.2 million).
The kingdom’s imports of cigarettes from Germany and Turkey are higher in value than its imports of pharmaceuticals, special cars, and some metal product from those two countries.
They are also higher in value from the kingdom’s imports of fuel oil, foodstuffs, carpet and rugs imported from Turkey.
In addition to Germany, Turkey and Switzerland, Saudi Arabia imports tobacco from 12 other countries such as India (SAR87.1m), Czechoslovakia (SAR50.1m), France (SAR28.4m), Indonesia (SAR15.9m), Poland (SAR15.5m), the Philippines (SAR13.4m) and South Africa (SAR7.3m).
(SAR1 = AED0.98, at the time of publishing)