Industry Updates

'SAMENA Daily' - News

Saudi digital economy accounts for 14% of Kingdom’s GDP, new GASTAT analysis reveals

Saudi Arabia’s digital economy contributed 14 percent to the Kingdom’s gross domestic product, according to a first-of-its-kind survey conducted by the General Authority for Statistics.

The study, which was carried out in 2023 and covers the previous 12-month period, set out the areas that have seen significant growth in this field.

The survey aligns with recommendations from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the UN Conference on Trade and Development.

According to the Digital Economy Survey, nearly half of all establishments, at 48 percent, invested in cloud computing services, encompassing various offerings like postal services, security software applications, file storage, and database hosting.

Information and communication activities led the pack, with 68.3 percent of institutions in this sector purchasing cloud services, followed by education at 66.9 percent, and professional, scientific, and technical activities at 59.5 percent.

Around 20.3 percent of establishments provided services via electronic applications, with education leading at 44.5 percent, followed by accommodation and food services at 39.9 percent, and arts and entertainment at 31.9 percent.

In terms of electronic purchases, 18.5 percent of institutions placed orders for goods and services online, with information and communication establishments leading at 40.1 percent. They were followed by professional, scientific, and technical activities, as well as financial and insurance activities, both at 35.7 percent.

Moreover, 60.1 percent of institutions utilized internet-connected devices or systems, encompassing smart alarm systems, meters, lamps, and surveillance cameras.

Health and social work activities establishments were the highest users at 67.4 percent, followed by financial and insurance activities, and education activities, each at 65.2 percent.

The survey aims to provide a database for conducting studies and developing indicators about the digital economy sector in Saudi Arabia. It serves as a reliable basis for research and provides decision-makers with valuable data for local, regional, and international comparisons.