Saudi Arabia signs SR1bn of education deals

17 January 2012

Education Minister signs construction contracts for a number of education projects in the kingdom

Saudi Arabia’s Education Ministry has signed contracts worth more than SR1bn ($267m) for several university construction projects across the kingdom.

The contracts were signed by the kingdom’s Education Minister Khalid bin Muhammad al-Anqari on 15 January. The projects include the establishment of hospitals at the University of Baha and the University of Tabuk and a College of Engineering at the University Colleges Complex in north Jeddah.

The Education Minister also signed deals to build a power station at the University of Shaqra and support buildings at the University of Tabuk.

The ministry’s investment is part of Riyadh’s plans improve education and training facilities for its rapidly growing population over the next five years. In the kingdom’s ninth five-year development plan (NDP), approved by King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al-Saud in August 2010, the government set out plans to spend $195bn towards developing the country’s education sector.

The 2012 budget allocates $44.2bn, 24 per cent of the total $184bn budget, to improving education and training. The kingdom plans to start work on 742 new schools in 2012, in addition to the renovation of 2,000 existing schools. There are currently 2,900 schools currently under construction in Saudi Arabia.

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