(MENAFN - Arab News) The volume of canceled projects in the Kingdom is estimated at 196 billion (SR735 billion) where other projects worth 167 million (SR626.25 million) have been delayed, local media said quoting MEED GCC Projects Index.
However, the Kingdom ranked second at the GCC level to have posted the biggest project growth index at 31 percent in the current year (2013) jumping over the 1 trillion (SR3.75 trillion) mark in November, the first since 2010, the report said.
Five biggest contracts in the GCC region were awarded in the Kingdom; three of them were in one project - Riyadh (mini-rail) metro project, the report said.
On the other hand, the Kingdom will spend more than 800 billion (SR3 trillion) in the pipeline of future projects by 2030 thanks to the efforts of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah on the diversification of the Kingdom's economy, the report said.
Meanwhile, the UAE posted the highest project growth index at 32 percent in the current year on the back of the projected Dubai property boom, according to the report.
Despite the advanced position of Saudi construction market, projects worth 167 million (SR626.25 million) have been suspended and another 196 billion projects canceled compared to 336 billion and 383 billion, respectively, in the UAE, the report said.
According to the report, the GCC projects index reached the highest level at 3.19 trillion in November 2012 after a series of fluctuations it experienced during the last seven years. In 2009, it reached the 3 trillion mark but with the advent of the global financial crisis it fell back to 2.2 trillion in June 2011, the report added.
Since a year ago, the GCC project index has grown by more than 30 percent to reach its current level of 3.19 trillion thanks to the re-launch of the suspended projects and introduction of new ones, the report added.
Based on data earlier released by MEED, the construction sector in the Kingdom has historically been the largest sector followed by oil and gas, power and chemicals. The main drivers of the market continue to be high oil prices, the need to diversify the economy, job creation and demographic growth, it said.