Animals and Plants
What is growing there in Saudi Arabia?
Not much is growing in Saudi Arabia! The vegetation is limited to low-growing grasses or shrubs that are undemanding. In the oases date palms grow. Since the oases are mostly cultivated, fruit trees and vegetables also grow here. There is only forest in the mountains of the coast, there are also holm oaks and cedars. But when there is water, plants grow there too.
Which animals live in Saudi Arabia?
Although the habitat for animals is not exactly inviting due to the harsh external conditions, many animal species have developed in Saudi Arabia. Insects, snakes, lizards and scorpions live where you don’t want anyone to go, as do many species of butterflies and smaller mammals.
Some bird species have also been spotted. They also travel through Saudi Arabia on their journey to Africa. Baboons feel at home in the Asir Mountains. Leopards are almost extinct, but they can still find refuge in remote regions that have been avoided by humans. A special antelope species that was almost extinct called oryx was reintroduced and is now protected. Then there is the fascinating underwater world of the Red Sea.
The largest economy in the Arab world
Saudi Arabia is the largest economy in the Arab world. Saudi Arabia is one of the richest countries in the world and owes this to its oil reserves. It is one of the largest oil producers in the world and the largest exporter of oil. A quarter of the reserves that we know are in Saudi Arabia. There is also natural gas, gold, silver, iron and tin.
Huge industrial centers have sprung up in Saudi Arabia
The oil is extracted and then processed further. Large industrial centers emerged for this. A large part of the export revenue is based on the sale of petroleum. That is also the largest part of the state revenue. Not only does the Saudi royal family benefit from this, but also the population, because nobody here has yet to pay taxes. Water, electricity and fuel are also subsidized.
No taxes (yet) for the population
There is no income tax, but also no VAT. Since oil prices fell, and with them so did government revenues, the government is now thinking about austerity measures and even introducing taxes. At the same time they are looking for other sources of income for the Saudi state in addition to oil.
Youth unemployment in Saudi Arabia is high. 30 out of 100 young people under the age of 26 have no job. The price of gasoline doubled in 2015 from 10 to 20 cents. That is very little compared to our prices, but for the Saudis it is a doubling of the prices.
Economic reforms are now planned. You think about additional income, such as VAT. 65 percent of the employees work for the state and the bureaucracy is to be cut.
More people from Saudi Arabia are also said to be doing jobs that were previously taken over by foreign workers. Women – of whom only a small proportion has worked outside the home up to now – should also increasingly find their way onto the labor market. There is no other way to save the economy, as the new king has recognized and is slowly promoting these measures.
Eating in Saudi Arabia
What do you eat in Saudi Arabia?
An important basis for many dishes in Saudi Arabia is chickpea puree, which is called hummus there. Lenses are also popular. The dishes are often served with rice or bulgur, which are small round grains made from pre-cooked wheat that we often use to make salad. The Saudi Arabians love to eat starters. Check constructmaterials to see more articles about this country and Middle East.
When it comes to meat, you primarily eat lamb or chicken. Beef is not banned, but it is very rare. And pork may not be consumed by Muslims.
Typical Arabic dishes are lamb skewers or falafel (fried balls made from chickpeas), stuffed zucchini, pickled aubergines, fried eggs and fried rice balls. Also tabbouleh (bulgur salad) or Tattoush, a bread salad, are very popular.
Asian cuisine influences
Since many people from abroad, especially from Southeast Asia, also live in Saudi Arabia, there are also many dishes that have been borrowed here. In particular, the way of seasoning is often more in line with the customs in India than in Arabia. Cinnamon and turmeric are very popular to season. Nuts and dried fruits are also used as ingredients.
Bread for dipping
The bread that is usually served is pitta bread, which is also used to cook the sauce. However, this is always done with the right hand, because the left hand is considered unclean in many Arab (and also African) countries. The bread is often broken into pieces beforehand for dipping. Dates and figs are often eaten
as fruits, because they grow on site. Lunch is the most important meal of the day in Saudi Arabia.
Alcohol is not allowed to be drunk in Saudi Arabia, it is forbidden. Instead, a lot of black tea is drunk, which is heavily sweetened with sugar. The same goes for the coffee. Sweet pastries are also very popular.