Gulf Labour Markets, Migration, and Population (GLMM) Programme

An international independent, non-partisan, non-profit joint programme of a major Gulf think tank and a globally renowned academic migration centre.
The programme provides data, analyses, and recommendations contributing to the improvement of understanding and management of
Gulf labour migration, population, and labour markets, engaging with and respecting the viewpoints of all stakeholder.

Saudi Arabia: Work permits issued by economic activity sector (2010-2011)

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Economic activity sector of work permit’ holder year
2010 2011
Agriculture, Forests, Hunting and Fishing 97,414 135,689
Mines, Oil, Gas and Quarries 13,691 11,355
Manufacturing industries 342,181 418,885
Electricity, Gas and Water 10,483 7,340
Construction 1,762,186 2,263,656
Retails and Hotels 636,953 691,985
Transports and Storage 92,733 133,215
Finance, Insurance, Real estate services and Businesses 51,272 55,550
Collective, Social, and Personal services 323,033 370,418
Non stated 15,684 0
TOTAL 3,345,630 4,088,093

Source: Ministry of Labour
1. Definitions

Classification used for economic activity is adapted from ISIC 3.1

2. Data collection methodology

The issuance of the residency and work permits begins with filing an application with the Ministry of Labor.
After its approval, the Ministry of Labor forwards the application to the Ministry of Interior for the issuance of the residency permit.

3. Institution which provides data

Ministry of Labour

4. Data availability

Published in Ministry of Labour’s Statistical Yearbooks
MoL Yearbooks (in Arabic) are available online at (all issues since 2004)

Date of access: May 2013.

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