Saudi Arabia: Pakistan's Trade Partners

Article excerpt

Saudi Arabia has an area of 2,150,000 square kilometers and a population of 14 million. It is located with Red Sea in the West and the Gulf in the East. The oil sector constitutes the main stay of the Saudi Arabian economy. It provides about half the GDP, 90 per cent of Government revenue and practically all export earnings. Saudi Arabia possesses 40 per cent of the oil resources owned by OPEC and 26 per cent of world resources.

Economic development in Saudi Arabia has been achieved under a series of five year development plans. The fourth five year plan, covering the period of 1985 to 1990 aims at country's dependence on imports and places more reliance on private sector and free enterprise. Greater local industrial production is one of the aims of Saudi Arabia's fourth development plans.

Saudi Basic Industries Corporation operates iron and steel, chemicals, fertilizers, plastic and petrochemical industries. Most of the products produced are not only being marketed locally but are competing in the foreign markets. The sales of chemical products by the Saudi Basic Industries Corporation during the first quarter of 1988 stood at more than 900,000 tonnes. The products included butane, ethylene glycol, synthetic menthol, MTBE, styrene and

            COUNTRY PROFILE
Area (Sq. km)                  2,150,000
GNP ($ billion)                   86.527
Population (million)              14.016
GNP per Capita ($)                 6,170
Agriculture share in GDP (%)         4
Daily Calorie Supply
per Capita (1986) ($)              3,004
Life Expectancy                     64
Literacy Rate per cent              51

monovinyl chloride. Fertilizer sale during the same period came to about 400,000 tons, while plastic was about 250,000 tons. They included high and low density polyethylene,

                  TABLE-I
            IMPORTS AND EXPORTS
            Exports to   Imports from
Years     Saudi Arabia   Saudia Arabia  Balance
1984-85        2,627          9,570      - 6,943
1985-86        3,470          6,719      - 3,249
1986-87        4,510          4,920         - 410
1987-88        3,892          5,622      - 1,730
1988-89        2,128          5,541      - 3,413
  Source: Federal Bureau of Statistics

melamine, polystyrene and polyvinyl chloride. Production and sales of caustic soda was more than 200,000 tons. Steel and iron - rods and bars - sales were about 500,000 tons.

The Saudi Iron and Steel Company at Hadeed produces 1.5 million tons of re-enforcing bars and wire rods, the Saudi Steel Rolling Company (at Sulb) has an annual capacity of 140,000 tons of rods and bars. On the chemical side, the Saudi Menthanol Company (at Ar-Razi) produces about 640,000 tons of menthanol annually and the Saudi National Menthanol Company has the production capacity of 770,000 tons of chemical menthanol per annum. Yanbu Saudi Petro-chemical Company has an annual capacity of producing 560,000 tons ethylene, 250,000 tons of ethylene glycol and 430,000 tons of polyethylene. While the Jubail Petro-chemical Company has a capacity of 300,000 tons of low-density polyethylene, Saudi Petro-chemical Company (at Sadf) turns out 760,000 tons of ethylene, 560,000 tons of chloride ethylene, 360,000 tons of styrene and 450,000 tons of caustic soda. The Arabian Petro-Chemical Company (Petrokemya) has a capacity of 650,000 tons of ethylene, 100,000 tons of polystyrene and 50,000 tons of butane -- 1. The Eastern Petro-Chemical Company (Sharq) produces 140,000 tons of low-density polyethylene and 330,000 tons of ethylene glycol.

In the fertilizer sector, the Saudi Arabian Fertilizer Company (SAFCO) produces 330,000 tons of Urea, 100,000 tons of melamine. The National Industrial Gas Company produces 146,000 tons of nitrogen and 438,000 tons of oxygen annually. The Saudi European Petro-Chemical Company (Ibn Zahr) produces 500,000 tons of MTBE (methyl tertiary butane ether), while the capacity of the National Fertilizer Company (Ibn Al-Baytar) is 500,000 tons of ammonia and 800,000 tons of compound fertilizers and phosphates per year. …