Saudi real estate transactions decline in Q1 2016
The deals reaching $22.2bn were the weakest since 2011 and a result of the recession the real estate market has suffered over the past two years
Saudi Arabia witnessed a decline in real estate transactions at the end of the first quarter of 2016 to the weakest figure recorded since 2011, Saudi daily Al Iqtisadiah reported.
Real estate transactions decreased 7.7% in Q1 2016 to $22.2bn (SAR83.3bn) as compared to the corresponding period of 2015.
Saudi's real estate market has suffered over the past two years with properties losing one fifth of their values as a result of the recession.
According to Al Iqtisadiah, agricultural land made up 85% of the transactions in terms of acreage.
This was a manifestation of the White Land tax - with investors looking at properties located outside the boundaries defined by the new levy.
The number of transactions in Q1 2016 dropped 20% compared to the same period last year, and 26.7% compared to 2014, reaching 62,000 deals.
The number of properties exchanging hands dropped 20% compared to the same period last year, and 26.5% compared to 2014, reaching 66,500 lands.
In terms of acreage, volumes grew 28.6% compared to the same period last year, reaching 979 million m2.