Saudi Arabia is situated in Western Asia and is considered to be the largest sovereign state in the Middle East and the 12th largest in the world. Based on the latest estimates from the United Nations, as of July 13, 2019, Saudi Arabia has a population of 34 million. This represents 0.44% of the world’s population. Saudi Arabia also has one of the world’s youngest population. The Saudi Arabia economy is one of the top 20 economies in the world and is centered on the country large petroleum resources. Saudi Arabia is also the leading oil exporter and the second largest oil producer in the world. The petroleum sector accounts for approximately 42% of Saudi Arabia’s GDP. According to Saudi Arabia News, the country, which was once a male dominated society, now “plans to grant women the right to travel without a male guardian’s permission.” This is an attempt by the government to “relax social restrictions.” Here are more facts about Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia Overview The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as it was officially known, was established in 1932 and is located in Western Asia. It is the fifth largest country in Asia, the second-largest in the Arab world, and the largest sovereign state in the Middle East. Some of the traces of the world’s earliest human activities are shown in the prehistory of Saudi Arabia. The capital of Saudi Arabia is Riyadh, and it is one of the largest and most populated cities in the world. All political and administrative activities of Saudi Arabia take place in Riyadh. It is also the headquarters of the central government bodies. Religion The religion of Saudi Arabia is Islam and the law of Saudi Arabia requires that all citizens must be Muslim. Any other type of worship by believers of other religions is forbidden. Although there are millions of Christians, Buddhists, and Hindus living in Saudi Arabia, no house of worship or temples are permitted in the country. Furthermore, conversion from Islam to another religion is punishable by death. In order to receive Saudi Arabian Nationality, it is required that all non-Muslims be converted to Islam. Due to this, Saudi Arabia has come under many criticisms because of its Islamic laws. Saudi Arabia Economy Saudi Arabia is the world’s leading oil exporter. It is the second largest exporter of petroleum in the world and it falls in the top twenty economies worldwide. It also has the world’s fifth largest natural gas reserves and the second most valuable natural resources. In the Arab world, Saudi Arabia economy is the largest. Figures provided by Saudi Arabia’s government reveals that there is an estimate of 260 billion barrels of proven reserves. This represents approximately one-quarter of the world’s oil reserves. Because petroleum in Saudi Arabia is close to the earth’s surface, it is cheaper and more profitable to extract oil in Saudi Arabia than in other parts of the world. The petroleum sector accounts for 42% of Saudi Arabia GDP while the private sector is responsible for 40%. According to the Saudi Ministry of Commerce and Investment, by 2020 the country will witness an increase in GDP capita from US$20,700 to US$33,500. Saudi Arabia Prince The crown prince of Saudi Arabia is Mohammad bin Salman Abdulaziz Al Saud and he is currently the Deputy Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia. He is second to the King and is the King’s designated successor. His position as the prince is the second most important position in Saudi Arabia. He was appointed as the prince of Saudi Arabia in June 2017 making him the world youngest prince at the time of his appointment. Saudi Arabia Prince is responsible for many successful reforms. For example, he was the one who removed the ban on female drivers, and the restriction of the religious police powers. He is also responsible for cultural reforms such as the first Saudi concert by a female singer, the first Saudi sports stadium to admit women, admitting more women in the workforce, and opening the country to international visitors and tourists. However, despite several praises for the new reforms, international commentators and human rights group still find fault about his leadership and criticize the shortfalls of his reform programs. Saudi Arabia Professional League The Saudi Arabia Professional League first season was held in 1976 and gained professional status in 2007. There were four qualifying teams for the AFC Championships as of 2008. This includes the top three winners of the team plus the winner of the Kings cup. The professional league is the top division of Association football league in Saudi Arabia. For six years, 2013-2019, the league was sponsored by Abdul Latif Jameel and was called the Abdul Latif Jameel League. Jeddah Saudi Arabia Jeddah is a major urban city in Western Saudi Arabia and the largest city in Makkah Province. It is considered to be the gateway to Mecca and Medina which are two of the holiest cities in Islam. Unlike other parts of Saudi Arabia, Jeddah has a desert climate with a tropical temperature range. The city retains its warm temperature in winter, and summer temperatures are usually very hot. In November and December, Jeddah has scanty rainfall in small amounts and heavy thunderstorm are very common throughout the winter. Jeddah South Arabia is the second commercial center of the Middle East and Dubai. It takes approximately two hours flying distance from the capitals of the Middle East and North Africa to fly to the city of Jeddah.
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