The Government, through the public sector, plays a major role in the Kingdom's industrial activity but, in recent years, the private sector has, with the Government's encouragement under the Kingdom's system of free enterprise, become increasingly involved in and responsible for industrial development and diversification.
Following the peak years of oil revenues in 1980/81 - 1982/83 (1400/01 - 1402/03 AH), it became necessary to undertake a very considerable downward adjustment to the government's level of expenditure. At the same time, the economy as a whole had to come to terms with more modest circumstances.
The most remarkable feature of this process is the relative ease with which both the government and the private sector came to terms with the new circumstances. This is not to say that the process has not been difficult, demanding, even painful. But it is true that a decline in revenues which could have destabilized other economies has been taken as an opportunity to consolidate past achievements and to engender a more commercially realistic and efficient approach to all types of venture.