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Consumers in Kingdom spent a record SR.724 billion in run-up to Ramzan

July 3, 2014

Total household spending in Saudi Arabia in the run-up to the holy month of Ramzan has reached its highest levels this year.

The report by Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) will show that household spending in the Kingdom reached a record SR.724 billion ($193 billion) during June and July this year, The Daily Saudi Gazette reported.

Secretary-General of the Saudi Banking Information and Awareness Committee Tala’at Hafiz said the rise in spending this year was due to the compounded effect of Ramzan coinciding with the shopping season in Saudi Arabia, which falls in the summer months, and during the summer school break.

There is traditionally a surge in retail activity during Ramzan and in the months leading up to it in the Kingdom. In recent years this has also been accompanied by an increase in electronic transactions.

Another report already published by SAMA expects an increase in electronic payments during Ramzan this year of 10 percent compared to the same period last year, as well as a 24-percent increase in the use of Electronic Points of Sale (EPOS).

The report also showed that the number of transactions carried out through the Saudi Payments Network (SPAN)-the central system in the Kingdom which connects ATM payments and withdrawals, EPOS payments, and credit card payments-totalled 1.3 billion in 2013.

Hafiz cited intensified marketing campaigns by banks encouraging the use of electronic payments-as well as numerous incentives they have offered to customers-for the jump before and during Ramzan this year.

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Source: Balochistan Times (Pakistan)

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