Saudi Arabia’s economic performance in 2021


Saudi Arabia`s economy recovered in 2021 after a difficult year with the restrictions of the pandemic as national, regional and international vaccination campaigns were rolled out and had an effect also driving export of oil.

The first quarter of 2021 witnessed Saudi Arabia’s export value and volume increase for the third consecutive quarter and reaching the highest level since the fourth quarter of 2019 according to official data published by the government.

The second quarter of 2021 enjoyed a substantial easing of unemployment as the rate among nationals of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia fell to 11.3 percent. The decrease can be attributed to ongoing efforts of the government to boost the employment of nationals in the private sector.

The exports grew by an annual rate of 123 percent according to the General Authority for Statistics (GASTAT). It was the highest annual growth rates since 2018. In June, the value of Saudi Arabia’s oil exports increased by 123 percent to SAR 61.5 billion (USD 16.4 billion) year on year.

The highlights in the third quarter of 2021 were a budget surplus and falling inflation which saw oil export values hit SAR 206.6 billion (USD 55.1 billion) as the sector enjoyed rising demand and higher prices. It led Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product (GDP) to jump by 7 percent to the highest level since 2012.

The Ministry of Finance recorded the first quarterly budget surplus of SAR 6.7 billion (USD 1.8 billion) since the first quarter of 2019. The improvement was driven by high oil prices and government’s social spending cuts. Conversely, Saudi Arabia’s annual inflation rate hit the lowest level in 20 months reaching 0.3 percent in August. Furthermore, the private sector experienced the strongest growth in September since 2015, according to IHS Markit, driven by new orders as consumers returned following the easing of the restrictions related to the pandemic.

The fourth quarter of 2021 saw a continuation of the increase in the production of oil as the exports hit their highest levels since April 2020 in October.

Please click on the link and reach out to learn more about the highlights of Saudi Arabia’s economic performance in 2021, the opportunities and possibilities in the country as well as the initiatives of Business Start Up Saudi Arabia.

Other News

BSUS News 19 - Thumb

Demand and timing key to success in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s technology sector is growing rapidly as start-ups, scale-ups and small businesses take advantage of the Kingdom’s ongoing economic reforms.


Read more
BSUS News 17 - Thumb

PIF generated half a million jobs in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia`s Public Investment Fund (PIF) has generated over 500,000 jobs in 13 strategic sectors.

One of the central roles of the PIF is to increase economic and business opportunities in the Kingdom...

Read more
BSUS News 16 - Thumb

Saudi Green Initiative to be launched in November

Saudi Arabia will launch the Saudi Green Initiative in November as the Kingdom continues its journey towards a sustainable future.

Sustainability is at the heart of the Saudi Vision 2030...

Read more
BSUS News 15 - Thumb

Innovation driven by health sector in Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia is actively encouraging innovation in the health sector to promote healthier lifestyles with better mental health.

It is expected to result in superior healthcare with benefits including...

Read more
BSUS News 14 - Thumb

Saudi Arabia’s hospitality sector is expanding quickly

Saudi Arabia welcomed 15 million tourists in the first three months of 2022 as the tourism sector witnessed a post pandemic revival.

Prior to the pandemic, Saudi Arabia transformed its tourist visa...

Read more
BSUS News 13 - Thumb

Saudi Arabia’s economy is estimated to grow significantly

Saudi Arabia's economy grew by 9.6% in the first quarter of 2022 according to flash estimates by the General Authority for Statistics (Gastat).

Early figures record...

Read more
BSUS News 12 - 020.00 - Thumb

Turkey and Saudi Arabia enroute to revive ties after visit

Saudi Arabia`s King Salman welcomed Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan recently at the al-Salam palace in the Red Sea city of Jeddah.

It is hoped the visit will lead to the normalisation of relations...

Read more
BSUSA News 11 - Thumb

Saudi Arabia improves status of foreign investors

Saudi Arabia`s most recent investment law is expected to increase international business in the country by 50 percent and significantly increase the country’s non-hydrocarbon gross domestic product.


Read more

Page Break