'Belly' indicator to measure growth | News | Al Jazeera

'Belly' indicator to measure growth

A Saudi business daily has added a new indicator called "belly" to measure "economic growth" driven by excessive consumption in the oil-rich kingdom during Ramadan.

    Consumption of food increases during Ramadan, bemoans a Saudi business daily

    In an editorial, Al-Eqtisadiah said it may be a joke - denoting the rise in the consumption of food and drink accompanied by a decline in the level of activity - but “we'd better take it seriously".
    While retailers are entitled to seek to increase their sales during Ramadan and citizens have the right to buy, "we should find a way of limiting our tendency for excessive consumption and try to develop an economic culture."

    The paper has said Saudis are apparently unable to get rid of their habit of showing off, especially when it comes to throwing lavish iftar banquets during a month that is supposed to be a time of modesty and compassion. 

    "We should find a way of limiting our tendency for excessive consumption and try to develop an economic culture"

    Saudi business daily

    This is precisely because they lack an economic culture, "which would turn us into a people with an economic sense, spending according to our needs and putting our money into worthy pursuits," such as helping needy compatriots.
    Separately, Al-Eqtisadiah reported that Saudi Telecom mobile phone subscribers had exchanged about 18 million text messages to greet each other on Sunday night, the eve of Ramadan.

    Saudis number about 17 million, but an estimated six to seven million foreigners live in the kingdom.



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