JEDDAH — Official data released at the weekend showed that 234,000 foreigners lost their jobs in the private and public sectors during the first quarter of 2018 in Saudi Arabia, according to a report published in Saudi Gazette.
The facts were reported by a survey based on the data of the General Authority of Statistics (GaStat).
The number of non-Saudi employees fell from 10.42 million at the end of the fourth quarter of 2017 to 10.18 million at the end of the first quarter of 2018.
Similarly, the rates of Saudi employees decreased to 3.15 million by the end of the first quarter of this year, compared to 3.16 million in the fourth quarter of last year.
According to the report, as many as 266 expatriate women go out of the labor market every day, 1,859 every week and 7,966 women every month.
It said the number of the Saudi job-seekers decreased by about 1.33 per cent when 14,400 of them have found jobs which means 160 Saudis are employed every day, 1,120 every week and 4,800 every month.
The report said about 72 per cent of the working Saudis have been registered with the General Organization for Social Insurance (GOSI) and the other remaining 18 percent is for the house helps.
It said the highest rate of the employed Saudis is in the age group of 30-34 years representing about 18 per cent followed by the age group of 25-29 who are 16.9 per cent.
The report said the least employed Saudis are those who are 65 years old or above representing only about 0.4 per cent.
These figures, in fact, stand in stark contrast with the measures taken by the Kingdom to Saudize various economic sectors, such as, telecommunications, insurance and driving, and some retail markets.
Saudi Arabia and the rest of the Gulf countries, it is very well known, depend heavily on foreign labor.