Volume 7, No. 3 – September 2003
SAUDI ARABIA: A BRIEF GUIDE TO ITS POLITICS AND PROBLEMS
examines the familial structure of the Saudi ruling oligarchy and considers this
regime‚??s performance given the economic and demographic challenges it faces.
Oligarchy is a form of government where a few rule the many. In Saudi
Arabia, the few are predominantly royal male princes who are all descended from
the founder of the modern Saudi kingdom, King Abd
al-Aziz who, upon
his death in 1953, left behind 44 sons (and an uncounted number of daughters) by
17 wives. Today, Saudi Arabia‚??s ruling structure is capped by a unique, almost
unprecedented, form of oligarchy, whose members are connected through a
bloodline to Saudi Arabia’s polygamous founder. The princes have treated the
country’s wealth of oil and minerals as their personal domain and made
themselves famous for their extravagant life style. Some princes have
accumulated enormous personal wealth; with King Fahd bin Abd al-Aziz, the
reigning monarch, topping the list with a personal fortune estimated at $20
This particular system has important implications for Saudi society,
politics, and policies. It is also a central consideration for pondering any
future reform or development in the country.
Economic challenges and Performance
As the princes have grown richer, the people of Saudi Arabia have grown
poorer. While gross domestic product (GDP) grew at an average of 1.25 percent
per year between 1981 and 2001, from
$155.1 billion in 1981 to $186.5 billion in 2001,
the average GDP per capita shrunk roughly 2.5 percent per year.(2) In fact, the
per capita GDP was worse in 1999 than it was in 1965 before the massive rise in
the price of oil.(3) Even the Saudi press has noted how, in nominal terms, GDP
per capita went from $10,330 in 1989 to $7,743 in 2001.(4)
Additionally, a review of the Saudi economy by the International Monetary
Fund indicates that, with the exception of the year 2000, in which the overall
central government budget registered a sharp turnaround due largely to a rise in
oil prices, "in every other year, the budget has run a deficit and the debt
stock has run up to $170 billion, which is equal to the size of GDP."(5) (By
comparison, in the European Union, the ratio of public debt to GDP is restricted
to 60 percent.) Given the lack of discipline by many princes and a bloated
bureaucracy, these issues are not likely to be solved quickly.
Beyond the poor financial management by the ruling elite, this section
examines the major systemic problems of the Saudi economy, including its
dependence on oil, its population explosion, and its massive unemployment.
The Dependence on Oil
Saudi Arabia is an oil-based economy with strong
government control over major economic activities. The petroleum sector accounts
for roughly 75 percent of budget revenues, 45 percent of GDP, and 90 percent of
export earnings. Indeed, only about 25 percent of GDP comes from the private
sector. Saudi Arabia‚??s economy remains, despite attempts at diversification,
heavily dependent on the production and export of oil.
A strong rebound in oil prices beginning in the latter part of 2002 and the
beginning of 2003 provided a little relief for the Saudi economy. According to a
Saudi Arabia Monetary Authority (SAMA) report, the Kingdom‚??s revenues from oil
in 2002 reached $54.4 billion or 30 percent over the budgeted revenues.
However, actual spending has also exceeded budgeted expenditures by 11 percent,
reaching $60 billion, up from a projected $53.9 billion.(6) The rise in oil
prices preceding the war in Iraq was a temporary rise, however, and so will not
dramatically alter the revenue figures, nor provide long-lasting relief for
burgeoning public debt. In other words, the long-term health of the economy
still requires a measure of fiscal discipline, which the Saudis have so far
failed to exercise.
In fact, in the long-term, oil prices will likely suffer as Iraq reenters
the export market at eventually higher levels than during the period of UN
sanctions, since it possesses the world‚??s second largest oil reserves. It could
increase its exports from the two million barrels a day (mbd) produced at the
end of Saddam Hussein‚??s regime to 3.5 mbd within 18 months, and has a reasonable
potential to produce 6 mbd in 3 to 5 years.(7) While Saudi Arabia produced 8.7
mbd in 2002 (11.8 percent of the world market), total global production is only
about 74 mbd.(8) And from the Saudi perspective, even a reduction of $10 in the
price of a barrel of oil would mean a loss of revenues of about $70 million a
day, or a loss of approximately $25 billion on an annual basis. Since the
beginning of the war in Iraq until the end of May, oil prices have already
fallen roughly $5 per barrel.(9)
The Economy‚??s Non-Oil Tax Base
The non-oil government revenues are
constrained by a largely non-competitive market place where monopolies and
‚??exclusive dealerships‚?Ě are dominated by members of the royal family and their
cohorts, and usually they do not generate revenues for the government in the
form of sales or income tax. While some monopolies and single dealerships
control large segments of the market, they are protected by the
Shari‚??a (Islamic law) from paying taxes on
their earnings. Rather, they are required to make a voluntary contribution of
2.5 percent in the form of zakat
(religious charity) to organizations or groups or individuals of their choice.
This religious protection of the rich and the powerful deprives the
government of vital sources of income to address the social and economic needs
of the majority of the people. The result is a skewed income distribution and
the growth of extensive poverty and deprivation. Despite growing social needs,
Khalid al-Qusaibi, the Saudi minister of planning has recently confirmed that
the Saudi Government will not introduce the income tax to reduce the burden of
the national debt or redistribute national wealth.(10)
While GDP went from $155.1 billion in
1981 to $186.5 billion in 2001, the
population grew from 9.9 million in 1981 to 21.4 million in 2001, an increase of
54 percent. Thus, while economic growth has averaged 1.25 percent annually, the
population has increased by about 3.67 percent per annum.(11) The UN has
estimated that the rate of population growth in Saudi Arabia in the years
1975-1999 was at an even higher rate of 4.2 percent, making it one of the
highest in the world.(12)
According to Dr. Wadi‚?? Ahmad Fadhil, a professor of economics at King Abd
al-Aziz University, the kingdom has been facing a population explosion since the
early 1990s which will remain at about the same rate through the 2030s. At this
rate, the population will double every 20 years from 20 million in 2000 to 40
million in 2020.(13)
There are several causes for this tremendous population growth. The first is
that infant death rates in the Kingdom have plummeted over the past 20 years.
From 65 deaths per 1000 live births in 1980, Saudi Arabia had dropped to 19 per
1000 by 1999–one of the lowest in the Arab world and under half the regional
average.(14) Likewise, life expectancy in Saudi Arabia, which was 61 in 1980,
had risen to 72 by 1999 (from two years under the world average to six years
Clearly, these improvements are largely the fruit of Saudi investment in
the health care system. The Kingdom currently spends approximately $890 per
person on health care expenses, the third highest in the region after Israel
($1,730) and the UAE ($1,495), and is twice as high as the region‚??s fourth
biggest spender (Lebanon at $430).(16) However, as a portion of total GDP (which
tells what percent of the oil revenue goes to health), Saudi Arabia was in the
middle for the region with 8 percent of GDP, following Lebanon (9.8 percent),
Israel (9.5), Jordan (9.1), the PA (8.6), and the UAE (8.2).(17)
Despite all these improvements in health care, the country has been
unwilling to seriously tackle the issue of family planning and birth control in
order to rein in population growth. The average woman still has 5.4 children,
though this has dropped from 5.7 in 1997.(18) One Saudi analyst, Muhammad Abd
al-Latif al-Sheikh, foresees a very serious problem in terms of water supply for
this burgeoning population. This conclusion led him to suggest, though this is
not a popular idea in Saudi Arabia, that some form of ‚??population
rationalization‚?Ě may become inevitable. (19)
Unemployment figures in most developing countries are unreliable. There are no
official employment agencies which register work seekers on a regular basis and
governments may be reluctant to make known the extent of the problem. Saudi
Arabia is no exception. A Saudi newspaper speculates that while the unemployment
rate is estimated at 20 percent it could be as high as 30 percent. The irony of
the situation is that the Saudis employ 6 to 7 million foreign workers,
including 3 million maids and drivers.
The foreign workers transfer, primarily to their home countries, 50 billion
Saudi riyals ($13.3 billion) annually.(20) To reduce the number of expatriate
workers, the government has recently decreed that 24 categories of employment
will be restricted to Saudi applicants.(21) Minister of Interior Prince Naif,
who is in charge of foreign labor, has decreed that foreign workers and their
family members should not exceed 20 percent of the Saudi population in 2013.(22)
To deal with the problem of unemployment the Saudi government has allowed
the civil service and the public sector to hire Saudis for nonexistent jobs,
turning government agencies into a vast social welfare system. As a result, Dr.
Abd al-Rahman al-Shaqqawi, director of the Saudi Institute of Public
Administration, has estimated that $28.5 billion, 65 percent of the Saudi annual
budget, is earmarked for salaries and that proportion is bound to increase.(23)
Poverty is one of the immediate manifestations of unemployment. In Saudi
Arabia, poverty is reflected in high population growth, in poor housing and
inadequate social services. To dramatize the problem of poverty in Saudi Arabia,
Crown Prince Abdallah toured homes of poor people in Riyadh for an hour and a
half. He called on the wealthy people of Saudi Arabia to do more for the poor,
which, as will be discussed later, is the Saudi way of addressing urgent social
issues. A striking manifestation of poverty is the large and growing
number of street beggars. According to published data, the number of arrested
Saudi street beggars, both male and female has been on the increase. Most
alarming is the number of beggars who are children. A Saudi journalist complains
about ‚??convoys of human beings who arrive every day‚?¶ who could be a source of
danger to the citizen and the security of the land.‚?Ě The author, Salwa abu
Mideen, complains that beggars search the garbage cans, which cause ‚??the spread
of bad odors, flies and mosquitoes.‚?Ě(24)
At the same time, the elite has a very high standard of living. In 2002,
the Saudis charged $19 billion against their Visa credit cards, an increase of
23 percent over the previous year. The average annual charges were $8700 per
card.(25) The kingdom imports more than 275,000 cars a year at a cost of 41
billion riyals ($10.9 billion), in addition to spare parts at a cost of 9
billion riyals ($2.4 billion).(26) It is revealing that Saudi Arabia is perhaps
the only country in which Mercedes cars are advertised as gift items.
The Structure and Role of the Saudi Oligarchy
Modern Saudi Arabia was founded by King Abd al-Aziz bin Sa’ud in 1932.
Since his death in 1953, the throne has been held successively by four of his
sons. The crown first passed to the eldest son, Sa’ud, who was succeeded by
Faisal in 1964. Khalid succeeded Faisal when the latter was assassinated by a
nephew in 1975; Khalid was succeeded in 1982 by Fahd who continues to rule
formally as king and prime minister to the present day, although real power is
vested in his half-brother, Crown Prince Abdallah.
The heir to the Saudi throne is selected by the royal family through a
secretive process. The chosen heir is given the title of "crown prince" and
holds the position of first vice minister* in the king’s cabinet until
such time as he becomes king. Presently, Prince Abdallah bin Abd al-Aziz is the
crown prince. Should he become king, he would be the fifth son of the family
patriarch, bin Sa’ud, to succeed to the throne.
The central figures of the oligarchy are the "Sudairi seven" which comprise
King Fahd and six of his brothers whose mother was Hassa bint Ahmad al-Sudairi.
Crown Prince Abdallah is a half-brother to the seven whose mother was al-Fadha
bint Asi al-Shuraim. The Sudairi seven comprise:
Fahd bin Abd al-Aziz King and Prime Minister
Sultan bin Abdul-Aziz Second
Vice Minister and
Minister of Defense and Aviation
Abd al-Rahmam bin Abd al-Aziz
Vice Minister of Defense
Na’if bin Abd al-Aziz Minister of Interior
Ahmad bin Abd al-Aziz
Vice Minister of Interior
Salman bin Abd al-Aziz Governor of Riyadh
Turki bin Abd al-Aziz Businessman, lives in Cairo
Based on extensive examination of two Saudi dailies–Okaz and
al-Riyadh— a number of charts with the names of the various princes in
senior government and other positions have been pieced together. The charts
cover most of the highest echelons of government. They include 103 princes (and
one princess), in addition to the king, who are often mentioned in the dailies
in connection with their duties or activities, such as attending receptions or
receiving or bidding goodbye to a senior member of the royal family or foreign
dignitaries. Others may be mentioned in connection with medical treatment
abroad. Some names appeared in special notes of gratitude and appreciation when
one or more of the leading princes offered condolences to a bereaved family,
normally a wealthy and/or important family which can afford to pay for "thank
you notes" which cover an entire page in one of the Saudi dailies.
The charts provide visual evidence of the pervasiveness of the Saudi royal
oligarchy over all ruling positions of the Saudi kingdom. The charts provide a
picture of the extent to which an oligarchy of a little over 100 princes,
related by blood and accountable only to themselves, control the lives and well
being of 22 million Saudis.
Chart I: The King and
Chart I represents the apex of the
political-military establishment with King Fahd at the top followed by his two
brothers, Abdallah, as crown prince, vice minister and commander of the
National Guard, and Sultan, as the second vice minister, and minister of
defense and aviation. Fahd‚??s own son, Abd al-Aziz is a state minister for
cabinet affairs and a gatekeeper to the king. Two half-brothers, Turki and Badr,
serve as the deputies to the commander of the National Guard. Three of
Abdallah‚??s sons, Mut‚??ib, Turki and Abd al-Aziz serve in various senior
capacities in the National Guard and hence under their father. The separation of
the National Guard from the ministry of defense is intended to avoid the
concentration of too much military power in the hands of any of the leading
Royal Members of the Cabinet
Chart II provides
information on the ministerial positions in the cabinet held by the princes. The
cabinet comprises 24 ministers (with portfolios) and 8 state ministers. The
three key ministries, foreign affairs, defense and interior are held by senior
figures of the royal family. The minister of foreign affairs, Prince Faisal, is
the son of the late King Faisal, and thus a nephew of the reigning king. The
defense and interior ministries are held by members of the Sudairi seven, Sultan
in defense and Na‚??if in interior, both brothers of the king.
Below the ministers‚??
level are a number of princes who are the children
or close relatives of the ministers themselves. In the ministry of foreign
affairs, the most important diplomatic post–ambassador to the United States–is
held by Prince Bandar, the son of the previously mentioned defense minister,
In the recent cabinet reshuffle, Prince Bandar was given the rank of minister,
though keeping his position as ambassador to the United States.
Prince Bandar bin
Sultan is not just any other ambassador. He is responsible for maintaining the
vast and intricate relations between his country and United States at the
highest levels. His access to high-ranking U.S. officials has no equal in
Washington. Recent discussion about succession in Saudi Arabia has focused on
Prince Bandar being elevated to a high position in Riyadh should the leadership
decide to skip over his father, Prince Sultan, as the next crown prince if
Abdallah were to become king. The promotion of Prince Bandar is said to
compensate his father (one of the wealthiest men in Saudi Arabia. His wealth is
derived from commissions on vast military procurements).(27)
The ambassador to the United Kingdom, Prince Turki, is the son of the late King
and thus the
Turki al-Faisal, the Saudi Ambassador to the U.K. Two other princes occupy the
two most senior civil service posts in the ministry of foreign affairs, including that of the first
secretary-general and the director general of inspection, and both are nephews
of the king.
In the ministry of defense, the second most important position below that
of the minister himself is held by another member of the Sudairi seven, Abd al-Rahman
(Sultan‚??s brother) who serves as vice minister. Sultan’s son, Khaled,
serves as assistant minister while his half brother, Nawaf, occupies the
powerful position of director of central intelligence (previously occupied by
the minister‚??s nephew, the aforementioned Prince Turki.)
The ministry of interior is a powerful ministry because it controls the 13
governorates of the country. Both the minister, Na‚??if, and his vice
are members of the Sudairi seven. The minister‚??s son, Muhammad, serves as the
The possibilities for favoritism in the granting of government contracts
are enormous. A half-brother of King Fahd, Prince Mut‚??ib, serves as a minister
for public works and housing, while his half-brother, Prince Ahmad, is his vice
The ministry of public works is an important economic ministry with control over
a large amount of money. Prince
Abdullah bin Faisal bin
Turki is the governor
of the investment authority with the rank of
minister. He is
married to a sister of the favourite wife of Prince Sultan, the defence
Princes serve as vice ministers in two other ministries, petroleum and
planning. In the ministry of petroleum, the vice minister is Prince Abd al-Aziz,
the son of Prince Salman who is the governor of the important governorate of
Riyadh and one of the Sudairi seven. In the ministry of planning the vice
minister is Prince Faisal, the son of Prince Sultan.
Two significant ministries–finance and petroleum–have always been under
non-royal technocrats. In the case of the ministry of finance, a non-royal
minister is perhaps intended to prevent any of the leading princes from
controlling the enormous finances of the kingdom. In any case, the minister of
finance does not have the stature to stand up to any of the senior princes.
While the kingdom has a budget approved by the cabinet, there appears to be no
strict control over expenditures, if judged by the frequency with which the king
or one of the senior princes makes donations to causes big or small.
Nevertheless, a technocrat minister at the treasury guarantees a semblance of
accountability. In the case of the ministry of petroleum, major decisions
regarding production and pricing are made by the king or his vice minister, the crown
III: The Structure of the Sub-National Government
Arabia is comprised of 13 governorates (imarat), each
headed by a governor (amir) with the rank of a minister. All the governors
report to the minister of interior, Prince Na’if.
Many of the governors are either brothers of the minister of interior or his
nephews, and all of them are princes and members of the royal family, though
some without any direct blood link to the house of Saud.
The most senior of the
governors is the governor of Riyadh, Prince Salman bin Abd al-Aziz who is one of
the Sudairi seven. The other half-brothers of the minister of interior are the
governors of al-Hudud al-Shamaliyah, al-Madinah, and Jizan. The
minister‚??s nephews occupy the governorates in al-Baha, al-Sharqiyah, Asair,
Najran and Tabouk. Most of the governors have royal deputies.
Chart IV: Princes in
Other Senior Positions
Chart IV lists royal princes in a variety of senior positions in the
sub-national administration, the military establishment, youth, women and sport,
medical societies and business. Particular mention should be made of Prince
Mash‚??al bin Majid bin Abdul al-Aziz, the governor of the district of Jeddah (and
the son of
Prince Abdul Majid bin Abdul Aziz,
the governor of Mecca), Prince Sultan bin Salman, secretary general of the
Tourism authority and the son of Prince Salman, the governor of Riyadh.
In the military establishment, besides the minister of defense and air
force Prince Sultan, princes are commanders of the navy, air force, armored
corps, National Guard and a variety of air bases, including Prince Abdallah Air
Base, named after the Crown Prince.
In business and publishing, princes control the two major Saudi dailies,
al-Hayat and al-Sharq al-Awsat, both published in London. Princes
also control some of the largest business establishments, al-Mara‚??i, Arab
Electronics and the largest cement company, Qusaim Cement Company. Many princes
lend their names and connections to business enterprises or they control
‚??exclusive dealerships‚?Ě–the monopolistic form of trade that allows an
individual the exclusive rights to import a particular commodity. Many of these
princes/businessmen do not operate under the limelight like their political
cousins, and hence we have little information about their activities. An
exception, however, is Prince Walid bin Talal, a billionaire prince.
Princes also head sports and youth organizations as
well as a variety of medical societies. All the princes listed are males, which
is hardly surprising in the conservative Saudi society. The sole exception is
Princess Abta bin Hamoud al-Rashid, president of the Women’s Council, who is the
wife of Prince Muqrin, the governor of Madina.
Royal Donations to Address Social and
Having a patriarchal and proprietary view of the
country–and drawing scant distinction between the private and the public
domain–the royal oligarchy looks upon the Saudi people as subjects merely
deserving of royal charity rather than as the true owners of the country. Thus,
instead of addressing social problems as a public obligation requiring state
action, the royal oligarchy in Saudi Arabia individualizes the solutions by
making royal grants designed to enhance the gratitude and the loyalty of the
citizenry to their patrons. The absence of an income tax and the reliance on
zakat enhances this personalized and individualized form of social policy.
To illustrate this point, the following are but a few examples of royal
grants made to address broad social (and medical) issues and the spread of Islam
outside the kingdom:
–King Fahd donated 5.8 million riyals ($1.54 million) to an Islamic
–King Fahd donated 100 million riyals ($20 million) to establish a national
center for the treatment of breast cancer.(29)
–Prince Sultan (Minister of Defense) donated 15 million riyals ($4 million) for
the construction of a liver department in the armed forces hospital and another
60 million riyal ($16 million) for its equipment.(30)
–Prince Sultan donated 19 million riyals ($5 million) for the construction and
equipping of a kidney department in the armed forces hospital.(31)
–Prince Sultan‚??s City for Human Services opened in Riyadh on October 30, 2002.
It was financed by Prince Sultan‚??s charitable foundation at a cost of 1.2
billion riyals ($320 million).(32)
–Prince Fahd bin Sultan (Governor of Tabuk) undertook the cost of extending
power lines to al-Assafiya village and paid the electric bills for 3 years.(33)
–Prince Muhammad bin Fahd, Governor of Sharqiya, donated land for a large
housing project for the needy.(34)
–Princess Sara (wife of
Prince Abdul Majid bin Abdul Aziz, Governor
of Mecca) donated 1 million riyals ($266,000) to a psychiatric hospital in
The government-controlled newspapers, which report on these royal
donations, never question the source of the money. If it is public money why is
it offered as donations, and if they are private donations how can government
officials, and often their spouses, display such largesse unless their access to
public money is unrestricted?
Voices of Dissent
Voices of opposition to the oligarchy are beginning to appear. The minister
of economic affairs, Muhammad bin Abdul-Aziz Al-Sheikh, a scion of one of the
most distinguished families in the kingdom, tendered his resignation in early
2003. In it, he expressed his disappointment regarding the failure of economic
reforms, the waste of public money and the absence of plans for economic growth
based on justice and wellbeing for the people. The resignation was not
accepted.(35) However, he was not included in the new cabinet announced by King
Fahd at the end of April.
In April 2003, 100 politicians and academics sent a letter to the senior
princes. In it, they called for halting the waste of public money, convening a
conference for reconciliation and dialogue, reforming the judicial system,
granting equal rights to women, abolishing restrictions on travel and preventing
arrests without a trial. Above all, they called for the Saudi parliament to be
elected by the people.(36)
In early 2002 a Saudi daily published an article entitled: ‚??The Time has
Come for the Reform of State Institutions.‚?Ě The thrust of the article was the
need to tell the facts. The time of denials, the article said, has passed and
the time has come to tell the truth. It is time ‚??to draw the sword of conscience
in the face of the lazy and crooks.‚?Ě(37)
Perhaps most disturbing for the Saudi leadership are the voices of dissent
emanating from their Shi‚??a minority, which accounts for 20 percent of the Saudi
population. Most of them reside in the oil-rich eastern part of the country. One
of the main leaders of the Shi‚??a community, Sheikh Hassan al-Saffar, complained
about job and ethnic discrimination. The Shi‚??a, he said, are not allowed to
serve their country in the defense, security and diplomatic fields. They are
denied the right to observe their religious rituals and an official prohibition
exists on the publishing or importing of books related to the Shi‚??a. In general,
al-Saffar said, the Shi‚??a community feels a sense of marginalization.(38)
Yet despite all these issues, the existing system seems strong enough to
sustain itself, though possibly against rising dissent, precisely because of its
interlocking control mechanisms, ways of relieving the pressure, high degree of
control, and massive infusions of oil money.
* The Arabic word Na’ib
is used both for a deputy minister and a vice minister, with no distinction made
between the two.
Chart I: The King and his Deputies:
Chart II: Royal Members of the Cabinet
Chart III: The Structure of the Sub-National Government
Chart IV: Princes in Other Senior Positions:
V. Business &
magazine, April, 2003.
2. ‚??Country at a Glance:
Saudi Arabia,‚?Ě (World Bank, September 23, 2002) <http://www.worldbank.org/cgi-bin/sendoff.cgi?page=%2Fdata%2Fcountrydata%2Faag%2Fsau_aag.pdf>.
3. Eric Swanson, et al.,
World Development Indicators, 2001 (Washington, D.C.: World Bank, 2001), pp.
October 19, 2002.
5. "Article IV Consultation
with Saudi Arabia," (International Monetary Fund), November 7, 2001.
6. A summary of SAMA‚??s
report was published in the Saudi daily, Okaz, January 28, 2003.
December 31, 2003.
8. BP Statistical Review of World
Energy, (British Petroleum), 2003
9. Middle East Economic
Survey, figures can be found at the Alaska state tax division homepage: <http://www.tax.state.ak.us/PRICES/mon_otheroil.htm#otherprices>.
November 29, 2002.
11. Saudi population
statistics come from the ‚??Country at a Glance: Saudi Arabia,‚?Ě (World Bank) and
a World Bank file <http://www.worldbank.org/transport/rail/rdb/raildata/saudi.xls>.
A similar report was published by SAMA, a summary of which was published in the
Saudi daily, Okaz, on January 28, 2003.
United Nations Development Programme, Human
Development Report, 2001, (United
Nations, 2002), p. 155. Other organizations, like the World Bank, concur with
January 28, 2003.
14. Eric Swanson, et al.,
World Development Indicators, 2001, pp. 16-18, 114-6.
15. Ibid., pp. 114-6.
16. Ibid., pp. 98-100.
Health Expenditure per capita on average for the years 1990-1998; figures in
purchasing power parity (PPP).
17. Ibid., pp. 98-100. As a
measure of reference, the global average was 5.5 percent, while the regional
average was 4.6 percent.
18. ‚??Saudi Arabia Data
Profile,‚?Ě (World Bank), statistics drawn from the World Development
Indicators Database, published April 2003. <http://devdata.worldbank.org/external/CPProfile.asp?CCODE=SAU&PTYPE=CP>
(Saudi daily), March 8, 2003.
February 3, 2003.
(Saudi daily), May 5, 2002.
February 3, 2003.
May 14, 2003.
January 30, 2003.
April 14, 2003.
July 12, 2002.
May 1, 2003.
July 12, 2002.
June 4, 2003.
April 13, 2002
July 20, 2002.
October 30, 2002.
June 30, 2002.
July 10, 2002.
April 24, 2003.
March 16, 2002.
38. Al-Quds Al-Arabi,
April 24, 2003.
Nimrod Raphaeli received his Ph.D. in development planning
from the University of Michigan. He has spent most of his professional career at
the World Bank. Since his retirement from the bank, he has served as an
occasional consultant to both the World Bank and the International Monetary
Fund. Dr. Raphaeli joined the Middle Media Research Institute (MEMRI) as a
senior analyst in 2001.
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