Retail Renaissance In Saudi Arabia .pdf
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Retail Renaissance In Saudi Arabia
The largest economy in the GCC is emerging as a lucrative retail hub on the back of
a fast-growing domestic population and efforts to diversify away from oil.
The UAE is often hailed as the queen of shopping malls. After all, it has one of the
world’s largest — Dubai Mall — with more than 300,000 square metres of gross
leasable area (GLA) and a total floor size equivalent to 50 football pitches.
But its neighbour, Saudi Arabia, could soon overtake the UAE in terms of sheer scale
and volume of opportunity.
As the biggest economy in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia has a retail market to match
and it is rapidly growing.
Like-for-like sales in the kingdom increased last year by 6.4 percent to reach $96.3bn,
according to AT Kearney’s Global Retail Development Index, and total retail space
grew by 5.6 percent to 2.1 million sq m.
Retail experts operating in Saudi Arabia claim soaring population growth is fuelling
the sector: the country’s population of 30 million is forecast to grow by 1.6 percent
annually to reach 40 million by 2050 and the majority — 70 percent, according to
official estimates — is aged 30 or under, a prime market for retailers.
Meanwhile, aggressive Saudisation policies are expected to bring more people into
the workplace and boost consumer spending power.
Click here to check what Al Futtaim Group's Saudi Arabia country Manager, Richard