Saudi Arabia Macroeconomic Developments
- Saudi Arabia’s unemployment rate declined to 7.4 percent in Q4 2020, according to the latest data from the General Authority for Statistics (GAStat). The unemployment rate among Saudi nationals declined from 14.9 percent in Q3 to 12.6 percent in Q4.
- Saudi Arabia’s non-oil private sector economy continued to expand in March but lost further momentum from January’s peak amid a slowdown in new order growth, according to IHS Markit’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI). Saudi Arabia’s PMI registered 53.3 points in March compared to 53.9 points in February. Businesses continued to see growth in output, purchasing, and a stabilization of employment levels.
- Saudi Arabia awarded SAR80 billion ($21.2 billion) in construction contracts during 2020, according to USSBC’s Q4 Contract Awards Index Report. The value of awarded contracts in Q4 more than doubled the total from Q3 as business activity picked up and COVID restrictions were relaxed. Q4 contracts, which totaled SAR16 billion ($4.3 billion), were concentrated in the real estate (37 percent), power (23 percent), and water (20 percent) sectors.