Saudi Arabian Construction Industry’s Contribution to GDP Increased from 4.3% in 2011 to 4.8% in 2013

Date: 2015-09-18

“• According to the Central Department of Statistics and Information, the Saudi Arabian construction industry’s contribution to GDP increased from 4.3% in 2011 to 4.8% in 2013. The industry’s value add increased by 8.8%, from SAR87.3 billion (US$23.3 billion) in 2012 to SAR94.9 billion (US$25.3 billion) in 2013 in real terms, whereas it increased by 13.4%, from SAR118.5 billion (US$31.6 billion) in 2012 to SAR134.4 billion (US$35.8 billion) in 2013 in nominal terms. As part of the country’s economic goals of diversification and job creation, the government allocated funds for the development of healthcare, infrastructure, education and social services. The government announced a 2014 budget of SAR855.0 billion (US$228.0 billion). Its upcoming 10th five-year development plan for 2015–2019 will focus on economic development and raising living standards through a number of welfare activities. 

• The country is focusing on developing the tourism sector to reduce its dependence on oil. Projects such as a 20-year National Tourism Development Project (NTDP), approved in 2005, will attract a greater number of tourists – with volume expected to reach 45.3 million by 2025. Investments in the travel and tourism sector are expected to reach SAR33.5 billion (US$8.9 billion) by 2020. In 2014, the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA), announced plans to develop the hospitality and aviation markets, to increase the tourism sector’s contribution to the economy.

• In 2013, the government passed a new mortgage law to expand the real estate market. The law proposed several changes, including banks and other financial institutes becoming licensed to offer mortgages up to a maximum loan-to-value ratio of 70.0%. Factors such as population growth, gradual lifestyle changes from traditional cultural models, and the easing of restrictions in terms of acquiring loans through development funds will increase demand for housing. 

• Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries are focusing on developing transport infrastructure with an aim to encourage cross-border trade and reduce congestion as a result of rapid population growth. Saudi Arabia has several railway projects in development: the North–South railway line that connects Riyadh with ports and the mining centers at the Jordanian border, as well as the Landbridge freight link. Such projects are expected to support intra-regional trade and increase the country’s export capacity. 

• In 2012, King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy (KA-CARE) announced a plan to install 54.0GW of renewable energy by 2032. The total installation capacity will consist of 16.0GW of solar photovoltaic (PV), 25.0GW of concentrated solar power (CSP), 3.0GW of waste-to-energy, 9.0GW of wind and 1.0GW of geothermal energy. To reduce its reliance on hydrocarbon and to strengthen ties between Saudi Arabia and China, an agreement was signed for the production and peaceful use of nuclear and renewable energy in 2014.

• The Saudi Railway Master Plan 2010–2040 (SRMP) aims to provide the conceptual framework for the long-term development of the country’s passenger and transport railway network. Under this plan, SAR365 billion (US$97.3 billion) will be invested in the development of the country’s railway network by 2040. The plan includes high-priority first-level projects, with an investment of SAR63 billion (US$16.8 billion) for the construction of 5,500km of railway line during 2010–2025. Medium-priority second-level projects, valuing SAR209 billion (US$55.7 billion), include the construction of 3,000km of railway lines during 2026–2033, whereas third-level projects, valuing SAR93 billion (US$24.8 billion), include the construction of 1,400km of railway lines between 2034 and 2040.”


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