Unemployment rate in Saudi Arabia in 2020

In 2020, Saudi Arabia's estimated unemployment rate amounted to approximately 5.86 percent. This decrease is down almost 0.1 percent from the year before. The unemployment rate is defined as the percentage of unemployed workers in the total labor force.

Where are people employed?

Saudi Arabia's population is around 33 million inhabitants, and of the employed workforce, most have jobs in the oil and gas industry. This is to be expected, as the economy is based on the production and trade of oil, and as such the oil sector has a value of about 1.1 trillion Saudi riyals.

Facing challenges

Saudi Arabia has several economic challenges to face, including the environmentally disastrous impact of its oil and natural gas production; state-funded company Saudi Aramco is listed at the top polluter worldwide. Socially, Saudi Arabia has had a tumultuous past in terms of women's rights, where women only gained the right to drive in 2018 thanks to a series of reforms and compose just 18 percent of the labor force.

Saudi Arabia: Unemployment rate from 1999 to 2020

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Release date

October 2020


Saudi Arabia

Survey time period

1999 to 2020

Supplementary notes

Figures have been rounded.

All figures are modeled ILO estimates.

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Statistics on "Saudi Arabia"

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