RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s non-oil private sector continued its growth in March, driven by an increase in new orders, as the Kingdom’s Purchasing Managers’ Index for the month touched 58.7, according to a report.
The latest Riyad Bank Saudi Arabia PMI report, formerly the S&P Global Saudi Arabia PMI, noted that output and new business continued to rise significantly in March, supporting further growth in employment and purchases.
The Kingdom’s PMI, however, slightly slowed down from February, when it marked an eight-year record figure of 59.8.
According to the index, readings above the 50-mark show growth, while those below 50 signal contraction.
In January, the Kingdom’s PMI was 58.2, while in December, it stood at 56.9.
“Business conditions remain strongly positive at the end of the first quarter of 2023 as improving market conditions and increased development spending helped to boost demand in the non-oil private sector,” said Naif Al-Ghaith, chief economist at Riyad Bank.
He added: “Both output and new orders have expanded sharply, adding pressure on capacity at non-oil companies. Therefore, staffing levels have risen across all sectors and the growth in employment was among the strongest seen in the past five years.”