Highest Value Saudi Arabian Import Products

Saudi mountain pass winding highway

Saudi mountain pass

Cars, trucks, automobile parts and piston engines were among the 20 highest value products imported into Saudi Arabia during 2017.

The most valuable Saudi imports also include mobile phones, gold, medicines and computers. Food items including chicken and rice are also among Saudi Arabia’s highest value imports.

The following list shows on which product categories Saudi importers spent the most. Unlike most information currently available on the web, the items below are detailed at the 4-digit tariff code level.

This level of granularity can help entrepreneurs identify more precisely which products in which Saudi Arabia has strong demand perhaps competitive disadvantages compared with other nations. Innovation satisfying that demand can transform these disadvantages into lucrative business opportunities.

Highest Value Saudi Import Products

Below are the 20 highest value import products delivered to Saudi importers in 2017. Shown within brackets is the change in value for each imported product since 2013.

  1. Cars: US$9.5 billion (Down -41% from 2013 to 2017)
  2. Phone system devices including smartphones: $6.6 billion (Down -5.3%)
  3. Medication mixes in dosage: $3.8 billion (Up 1.4%)
  4. Gold (unwrought): $2.5 billion (Down -43%)
  5. Processed petroleum oils: $2.5 billion (Up 37.3%)
  6. Aircraft parts: $2.2 billion (Up 35.5%)
  7. Taps, valves, similar appliances: $1.7 billion (Down -18.1%)
  8. Computers, optical readers: $1.4 billion (Down -36.7%)
  9. Trucks: $1.3 billion (Down -64.9%)
  10. Poultry meat: $1.2 billion (Down -40.7%)
  11. Automobile parts/accessories: $1.2 billion (Down -35.5%)
  12. Rubber tires (new): $1.1 billion (Down -35.8%)
  13. Air conditioners: $1.1 billion (Up 8.3%)
  14. Machinery parts: $1 billion (Down -32.1%)
  15. Rice: $1 billion (Down -26.4%)
  16. Copper wire: $956.4 million (Up 7.7%)
  17. Liquid pumps and elevators: $908.3 million (Down -34.8%)
  18. Other food preparations: $900.3 million (Down -14.3%)
  19. Miscellaneous furniture: $877.7 million (Down -15.3%)
  20. Hot-rolled iron or non-alloy steel products: $870.1 million (Down -31.8%)

Among these product categories, refined petroleum oils posted the greatest increase in Saudi import purchases via a 37.3% gain in value from 2013 to 2017.

In second place were imported aircraft parts which appreciated 35.5%.

Saudi imports of air conditioners showed a respectable gain in 2017 up by 8.3%, followed by import purchases of copper wire up by 7.7%.

Leading the decliners were imported trucks (down -64.9%), gold (down -43%) and cars (down -41%).

See also Saudi Arabia’s Top 10 Major Export Companies, Saudi Arabia’s Top 10 Exports and Saudi Arabia’s Top 10 Imports

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on May 14, 2018

The World Factbook, Field Listing: Imports and World Population, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on May 14, 2018

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, www.intracen.org/marketanalysis. Accessed on May 14, 2018