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Manpower issues delay 40% of Saudi projects

SAK Consultants chairman highlights challenges facing Saudi government

Sheijh Solaiman El Khereiji at the CW Leaders in Construction KSA conference.
Sheijh Solaiman El Khereiji at the CW Leaders in Construction KSA conference.

Around 40% of construction projects in Saudi Arabia have failed to complete as a result of manpower issues, according to Sheijh Solaiman El Khereiji, chairman of SAK Consultants and a partner in Hyder Elkhereiji.

In opening remarks to this year's Leaders in Construction KSA event, Sheikh Solaiman highlighted the scale of the challenges facing the Saudi government over the next seven years, where more than 2mn new houses are needed in the Kingdom.

This figure has been revised upwards as in recent years only around 20% of the Kingdom's required housing has been delivered.

He pointed out that the Kingdom needs 600 schools over the next five years and 120 new hospitals and medical centres within the next seven years.

El Khereiji pointed to a number of big-ticket schemes that the Kingdom is undertaking to deliver thousands of houses within a single scheme, such as a 10,000-unit project in north Jeddah with 22 schools and 24 mosques that started six months ago and will take 42 months to deliver.

He also highlighted the Salman Bay project in Jeddah with 25,000 units and 30 schools. It started a year ago and will take nine years to complete.

"We are trying to reduce this to six years but it is not easy to do that mainly due to manpower and materials use," he said. 

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