package of handouts to Saudi Arabian citizens to compensate them for cost of
living increases will cost the government about SR50 billion ($13.3 billion)
this year, the information minister was quoted as saying on Sunday.
"The allocation of
SR50 billion for this decree indicates the leadership's concern for the
people's comfort and quality of living," Minister of Culture and
Information Awwad bin Saleh Alawwad told the Saudi-owned Al Sharq Al Awsat
On Saturday, the
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz ordered a monthly
payment of SR1,000 to state employees over the year in compensation for the
rising cost of living after Riyadh hiked gasoline prices and introduced
value-added tax. Pensioners and soldiers will also be given bonuses, while the
government will bear the cost of VAT in some situations, such as the first
purchase of a home. Read More...