Local and foreign investors pumped nearly 5.56 billion Saudi riyals ($1.48 billion) into non-oil industrial projects in Saudi Arabia in the fourth quarter of 2021, according to official data. 

The new investments boosted the total capital in the industrial sector in the world’s largest oil exporter to 1.33 trillion riyals ($355 billion) at the end of 2021, the Industry and Mineral Resources Ministry said in a report published in the local press on Monday. 

The report showed the Ministry issued 208 permits for industrial projects in the last quarter, bringing the total number of such projects in the Gulf Kingdom to 10,293. 

A breakdown showed foreign investors own 782 factories, accounting for nearly eight percent of the total industrial projects. Nationals control about 85 percent of the projects while nearly 751 factories are joint ventures. 

The report said small industries accounted for more than half the total projects while nearly 4,300 factories involve medium industries and 831 units cover heavy products. 

It showed industries cover mainly metals, chemicals, paper, building materials, machinery and equipment, electrical appliances, foodstuffs, and other products.

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)