Saudi university plans $799m expansion project

Jazan University in Saudi Arabia is undergoing a SR3bn ($799m) expansion project to include a number of new colleges.

According to the Saudi Press Agency, the university is currently implementing 20 projects.

Dr Ibrahim Abu Hadi, the supervisor of the university's public relations and information, said work includes the establishment of four medical colleges, a college of business administration, a number of support projects, and an electrical conversion station.

In line with the government’s push to get more nationals into work, education and training is a key component of Saudi Arabia's non-oil related budget, with 25 percent of total spending.

Hundreds of new schools are currently being built across the kingdom while billions of dollars are being spent on scholarships for Saudis studying abroad.

In April, Saudi Arabia’s King Abdulaziz University was rated as the top university in the Gulf, according to The Times Higher Education Asia University Rankings for 2012.

The Jeddah institution, which was founded in 1967 and is home to around 42,000 students, was ranked 49th in Asia overall. The university specialises in scientific undergraduate and post graduated programmes.

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