Saudi population exceeds 28 million

December 22, 2012
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The total population of Saudi Arabia has exceeded 28 million, the latest figures indicate.

According to official statistics by the Central Department of Statistics and Information, 28,367,355 people lived in Saudi Arabia in 2011. The figure published in the local Arabic daily Okaz includes 19,405,685 Saudi nationals, with a population growth rate of 2.28 per cent. The overall growth rate was 2.9 per cent, the department said.

The remaining 8,961,670 are foreigners, mainly workers from Asian countries.

According to United Nations estimates, Saudi Arabia has the sixth largest population in the Arab world, following Egypt (83 million), Algeria (36 million), Morocco (32 million) and Iraq (32 million).

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In a bid to help Saudi nationals find jobs in all sectors, Riyadh has been pushing for the implementation of a new employment approach. However, the policy has waded into controversy after private companies and establishments were asked to pay SR200 a month for every foreigner they employed in case the number of their expatriate employees exceeded that of Saudi nationals.

Company owners have been looking into way to force the labour ministry into reconsidering the decision, including enlisting the support of religious scholars.

Controversy was also stirred following an official decision to encourage Saudi women to take up jobs in fast-food restaurants and similar facilities.

Several Saudis said that the position clashed with local culture and values.

http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/saudi-arabia/saudi-population-exceeds-28-million-1.1121488

         

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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Career
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
Education
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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