Education minister announces that building programme will award two schools a day to contractors

Saudi Arabia has announced a £3.2bn project to build 3,200 schools.

The 20bn riyal (£3.2bn) building programme will provide facilities for more than 1.7 million male and female pupils throughout the kingdom. The Saudi ministry of education in Jeddah announced the plan on Sunday. It said the programme was already underway and it was awarding two schools a day to contractors, but further contracts are still to be awarded, according to local paper Arab News.

The programme is part of the King Abdullah Project for the Development of General Education. It comes on top of a SR9 billion (£1.47bn) pot previously allocated to education, of which SR4.2 billion (£690 million) will go on new schools and refurbishments. Saudi is building six new economic cities, each of which will have its own educational district. The first of these is the SR300 billion King Abdullah Economic City near Jeddah, which is being developed by UAE client Emaar.

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