Skip to content Skip to Search
Skip navigation

Food sector dominates new factories approved in Saudi

Saudi's Almarai rolled out multiple new products in 2023 with plans to enter the seafood and frozen bakery business Creative Commons
Saudi's Almarai rolled out multiple new products in 2023 with plans to enter the seafood and frozen bakery business
  • 9 new licences approved for food manufacturing in April
  • 10,873 factories built or under construction in the kingdom
  • Non-oil sales growth was strongest for nearly nine years

Saudi Arabia approved licences for 53 new factories with total investment capital of more than $5 billion in April.

The majority of new licences came from the food products industry, according to the latest monthly figures from the Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources, with nine new licenses approved.

Other major sectors included non-metallic minerals (eight licences), and four licences each for formed metals, rubber products and water treatment.

The new factories are estimated to create over 1,300 new jobs when fully operational, the ministry said.

A total of 14 new factories, with an investment value of SAR155 million ($41 million), started production in April. This created 394 new jobs and brought the total number of factories built or under construction in the kingdom to 10,873.

Two-thirds of the factory licences awarded in April were from Saudi-based local investors, while the remaining third were from foreign enterprises or joint ventures.

The Riyad Bank Saudi Arabia Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) reported this week that new orders across the kingdom’s non-oil sector rose at “accelerated, multi-year record rates”.

Data showed that output in the kingdom increased at the steepest rate since March 2015, while sales growth was the strongest for nearly nine years.

“Heightened demand and improved market conditions have accelerated employment growth to the highest level since August 2015 as well as purchasing activities,” Naif Al-Ghaith, chief economist at Riyad Bank, said.

Latest figures from the General Authority for Statistics also showed Saudi Arabia’s Industrial Production Index increased by 3.2 percent in April compared to a year earlier, boosted by a 10.5 percent jump in manufacturing activity.

Latest articles

B8KRCP The Bank of England underground Gold Vaults in London Stacks of Gold Bars are taken into storage Gold bars are taken into storage at the Bank of England;central banks around the world are increasing reserves

UAE increases gold reserves with growth set to continue

The UAE’s gold reserves reached almost AED20 billion ($5.5 billion) at the end of March, rising 12.6 percent year on year, with expectations that the growth will continue into the rest of the year. The Central Bank of the UAE (CBUAE) said the Gulf state’s reserves of the precious metal have risen considerably over the […]

Construction workers in Manama. 'There is plenty of office space in Bahrain and the occupancy rates even in the better buildings are not that high,' says one real estate expert

Extra supply casts big shadow over Bahrain’s real estate sector

The completion of a raft of developments in Bahrain has dampened hopes for strong growth in its real estate sector this year.  A flurry of activity at the end of 2023 led some analysts to predict stronger growth this year, after a period of low-single-digit increases or dips in prices, rents and deals. In 2023, […]

Shell Aramco LNG

Shell beats Aramco in race to buy LNG business

Saudi Aramco, the world’s biggest oil exporter, has lost out to UK rival Shell in its bid to buy Pavilion Energy, a Singapore trader of liquefied natural gas (LNG), from Temasek, the Asian island nation’s sovereign investment fund. Both companies were shortlisted for a potential acquisition worth billions of dollars. No financial details of Shell’s […]

The UAE, which is keen to embrace new technologies, ranked second for employment and third for international trade World Competitiveness Ranking

Saudi Arabia and UAE up in World Competitiveness Ranking

Saudi Arabia and the UAE have improved their rankings in the annual IMD World Competitiveness Ranking this year, as both Gulf states embrace artificial intelligence (AI) to make their economies more productive. The list, which is compiled by the International Institute for Management Development (IMD) in Switzerland, saw the UAE rise three places to seventh, […]