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Saudi Main Page

 

Economy

Economy - overview:
Saudi Arabia has an oil-based economy with strong government controls over major economic activities. It possesses about 20% of the world's proven petroleum reserves, ranks as the largest exporter of petroleum, and plays a leading role in OPEC. The petroleum sector accounts for roughly 80% of budget revenues, 45% of GDP, and 90% of export earnings. Saudi Arabia is encouraging the growth of the private sector in order to diversify its economy and to employ more Saudi nationals. Diversification efforts are focusing on power generation, telecommunications, natural gas exploration, and petrochemical sectors. Roughly 5.5 million foreign workers play an important role in the Saudi economy, particularly in the oil and service sectors, while Riyadh is struggling to reduce unemployment among its own nationals. Saudi officials are particularly focused on employing its large youth population, which generally lacks the education and technical skills the private sector needs. Riyadh has substantially boosted spending on job training and education, most recently with the opening of the King Abdallah University of Science and Technology - Saudi Arabia's first co-educational university. As part of its effort to attract foreign investment, Saudi Arabia acceded to the WTO in December 2005 after many years of negotiations. The government has begun establishing six "economic cities" in different regions of the country to promote economic development. Five years of high oil prices during 2004-08 gave the Kingdom ample financial reserves to manage the impact of the global financial crisis, but tight international credit, falling oil prices, and the global economic slowdown reduced Saudi economic growth in 2009, prompting the postponement of some economic development projects. Saudi authorities supported the banking sector during the crisis by making direct capital injections into banks, reducing rates, and publicly affirming the government's guarantee of bank deposits.
GDP (purchasing power parity):
$590.9 billion (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 23
$590.3 billion (2008 est.)
$565.9 billion (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars
GDP (official exchange rate):
$376.3 billion (2009 est.)
GDP - real growth rate:
0.1% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 115
4.3% (2008 est.)
2% (2007 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP):
$23,300 (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 55
$23,700 (2008 est.)
$23,100 (2007 est.)
note: data are in 2009 US dollars
GDP - composition by sector:
agriculture: 2.9%
industry: 59.7%
services: 37.4% (2009 est.)
Labor force:
7.193 million
country comparison to the world: 62
note: about 80% of the labor force is non-national (2009 est.)
Labor force - by occupation:
agriculture: 6.7%
industry: 21.4%
services: 71.9% (2005 est.)
Unemployment rate:
10.5% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 121
9.8% (2008 est.)
note: data are for Saudi males only (local bank estimates; some estimates range as high as 25%)
Population below poverty line:
NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share:
lowest 10%: NA%
highest 10%: NA%
Investment (gross fixed):
26.1% of GDP (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 36
Budget:
revenues: $135.9 billion
expenditures: $159 billion (2009 est.)
Public debt:
22.6% of GDP (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 101
18.7% of GDP (2008 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices):
5.1% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 145
9.9% (2008 est.)
Central bank discount rate:
2.5% (31 December 2008)
NA% (31 December 2007)
Commercial bank prime lending rate:
NA%
Stock of narrow money:
$139.2 billion (31 December 2009)
$113.6 billion (31 December 2008)
Stock of broad money:
$277.1 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
$250 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of domestic credit:
$2.248 billion (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 119
$18.99 billion (31 December 2008)
Market value of publicly traded shares:
$318.7 billion (31 December 2009)
country comparison to the world: 24
$246.3 billion (31 December 2008)
$515.1 billion (31 December 2007)
Agriculture - products:
wheat, barley, tomatoes, melons, dates, citrus; mutton, chickens, eggs, milk
Industries:
crude oil production, petroleum refining, basic petrochemicals, ammonia, industrial gases, sodium hydroxide (caustic soda), cement, fertilizer, plastics, metals, commercial ship repair, commercial aircraft repair, construction
Industrial production growth rate:
-2.8% (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 96
Electricity - production:
179.1 billion kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 21
Electricity - consumption:
165.1 billion kWh (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 20
Electricity - exports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)
Electricity - imports:
0 kWh (2008 est.)
Oil - production:
9.764 million bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 2
Oil - consumption:
2.43 million bbl/day (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 9
Oil - exports:
8.728 million bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1
Oil - imports:
79,250 bbl/day (2007 est.)
country comparison to the world: 74
Oil - proved reserves:
264.6 billion bbl (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 1
Natural gas - production:
77.1 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 10
Natural gas - consumption:
77.1 billion cu m (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 11
Natural gas - exports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 130
Natural gas - imports:
0 cu m (2008 est.)
country comparison to the world: 135
Natural gas - proved reserves:
7.461 trillion cu m (1 January 2010 est.)
country comparison to the world: 5
Current account balance:
$22.77 billion (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 15
$132.3 billion (2008 est.)
Exports:
$192.3 billion (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 20
$313.5 billion (2008 est.)
Exports - commodities:
petroleum and petroleum products 90%
Exports - partners:
Japan 15.33%, South Korea 12.71%, US 12.2%, China 10.38%, India 7.12%, Taiwan 4.54%, Singapore 4.25% (2009)
Imports:
$87.1 billion (2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 31
$101.5 billion (2008 est.)
Imports - commodities:
machinery and equipment, foodstuffs, chemicals, motor vehicles, textiles
Imports - partners:
US 12.32%, China 12.06%, Germany 7.67%, Japan 6.15%, South Korea 5.32%, India 4.99%, UK 4.72%, France 4.05% (2009)
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold:
$410.1 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 4
$442.7 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Debt - external:
$72.77 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 41
$79.16 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home:
$167 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 23
$131.5 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad:
$11.41 billion (31 December 2009 est.)
country comparison to the world: 47
$4.886 billion (31 December 2008 est.)
Exchange rates:
Saudi riyals (SAR) per US dollar - 3.75 (2009), 3.75 (2008), 3.745 (2007), 3.745 (2006), 3.747 (2005)

 


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