Demand will be boosted by population growth and new mortgage laws, say Cityscape organisers

Saudi Arabia needs one million new homes in the next five years, the organisers of a major property conference in country have said. The need is being fuelled by the rapid growth of Saudi's population of 25 million, which is increasing by 2.5% a year, meaning it is set to double within 28 years.

The drive to build homes will be boosted further when mortgages are allowed for the first time under a new law coming into force later this year. Aggressive spending plans have also been announced for 2009 to take advantage of cheaper commodities such as steel, which has fallen in price by 70% since last summer.

Saudi Arabia sunset
The population of Saudi Arabia is set to double in 28 years

Deep Marwaha, event director of Cityscape Saudi Arabia, said: “Anyone who doubts the potential for continued high levels of real estate investment and development in Saudi Arabia only has to examine some of the statistics.

“With a population of 25 million people growing at 2.5% a year, Saudi Arabia is set to double its population in 28 years. In addition, 40% of Saudi nationals are under the age of 20 and 70% under 30. If that is not enough, 65% of families currently don't own a home.”

More than 100 companies are expected to exhibit at Cityscape Saudi Arabia between 14 and 16 June in Jeddah. The exhibition will cover over 10,000m2 of floor space and is expecting to attract over 5,000 participants.