In the last quarter of 2022, the unemployment rates in Saudi Arabia hit a historical low of 8%, which is only one percentage point away from the targeted rate of 7% specified in the country's national transformation plan, “Vision 2030.”
The decrease in joblessness in the Kingdom can be attributed to the government’s activities and the private sector’s role in employment operations.
Legislation and localization programs in the country have also played a crucial role.
According to experts, government procedures and regulations related to human resources, whether in the public or private sector, have efficiently worked to create jobs and contribute to reducing the unemployment rate.
Saleh Al-Sedmi, a human resources expert, confirmed that giant projects, foreign companies entering the Saudi market, and accelerated employment in both the public and private sectors have directly contributed to the decrease in unemployment rates in the Kingdom.
Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat, he added that Saudization programs targeting active and promising sectors and employing citizens have also helped increase the number of employed individuals in the local market.
Moreover, some foreign companies relocating their regional headquarters to the Saudi capital, Riyadh, have reinforced efforts to reduce non-employment.
The country's overall unemployment rate, including non-citizens, fell to 4.8% in the final three months of 2022, according to a statement by the General Authority for Statistics (Gastat).
Gastat also revealed that unemployment in Saudi Arabia among citizens decreased to 8% in the fourth quarter of 2022, down from 9.9% the previous quarter.
Workforce participation among female citizens is also on the rise, with unemployment among Saudi women dropping to 15.4% in the final three months of 2022 from 20.5% in the previous quarter.
Despite the economic hardships experienced by many countries worldwide, including G20 states, due to market-based challenges and geopolitical factors, the unemployment rate in Saudi Arabia exceeded expectations, according to Gastat.
The decrease in unemployment levels in the Kingdom is the result of legislation, Saudization programs, job support, and monitoring of facilities by all relevant government entities.
Plans and initiatives launched under Vision 2030 have also contributed to achieving the highest rate of labor force participation, as per Gastat.