24-hour work permit adds SAR100bn annually to the Saudi economy

24-hour work permit adds SAR100bn annually to the Saudi economy
  • A Saudi cabinet decision came out last Tuesday permitting stores and restaurants to operate all day in exchange for paying a fee determined by Saudi Arabia’s municipal and rural affairs ministry.

NCB Capital commented on the decision saying that it would add SAR100bn to the Saudi economy, create more jobs opportunities, and increase consumption.

NCB Capital Company expected that the new law, which gives business activities in Saudi Arabia the flexibility to extend working hours to 24 hours, will have a positive impact on the Saudi economy by creating more job opportunities, raising consumer spending, and increasing the contribution of small and medium enterprises to the economy.

NCB Capital Company said that the biggest beneficiary of this law is the catering sector, in return for limited retail interest.

Iyad Ghulam, an equity research analyst at NCB, predicted that the 24-hour work permit decision would add about SAR100bn to the Saudi economy each year when it is fully applied, pointing out that the majority of shops will increase its work from two hours to three hours.

For his part, Hassan Al-Hwaizi, the president of the Chamber of Commerce in Abha, thanked on Thursday, the Saudi government for the decision of the Council of Ministers to allow business activities to work for 24 hours.

Al-Hwaizi said: “This decision is a fundamental requirement for investors in tourism and various commercial activities,” adding: “We have seen this through our participation in many events organized by the Chamber and attended by many investors in the above activities. This will certainly contribute to the provision of goods and services to the population around the clock, and enhance the quality of life in cities”.

“This decision opens up broad areas of private sector investment and job creation in line with the vision of the Kingdom 2030,” Al-Hawizi continued, expecting that this decision would contribute to increasing consumer spending in Saudi Arabia by about SAR90-100bn per year, according to economic statistics from several research bodies that confirmed that the decision is to provide  greater consumer options for citizens and residents.