Main Article Content

Nannapaneni Siva Kumar
Mohammad Imdadul Haque


welfare schemes, poor, India, Saudi Arabia, subsidized food, pension, subsidized housing, subsidized healthcare, subsidized education


Purpose of the study: The aim of the study is to find the similarities between the welfare schemes of Indian and Saudi governments, and the burden of these schemes and their impact on society. This study aims to compare and contrast the welfare schemes of two altogether different types of economy.

Methodology: This study applies the methodology of comparative analysis by employing descriptive analysis to study both the similarities and dissimilarities of the welfare schemes of Saudi Arabia and India.

Main Findings: Indian and Saudi governments have been spending a lot of welfare schemes of their respective GDPs. The intention of these governments is to help the poor to lead a minimum quality of life. Though the intention is genuine and appreciable, in terms of implementation, the two governments have not yet achieved any desired results even after 60 years of introduction.

Applications of this study: India and Saudi Arabia can learn from each other in designing and distributing welfare schemes like Saudi Arabia should focus to have targeted compensation and India to use its unique identification numbers to reduce leakages in its schemes. Instead of focusing on giving subsidies, it is better to devise a strategy with a timeframe to reduce poverty by creating many opportunities for the poor to improve their standard of living. 

Novelty/Originality of this study: The novelty in this study is a comparison of welfare schemes between two countries with two different types of political systems. While both countries are developing in nature, Saudi Arabia falls under a very high-income category country and India falls under the lower-middle-income category country.


Download data is not yet available.


Metrics Loading ...
Abstract 23 | PDF Downloads 29 XML Downloads 1 ePUB Downloads 3


1. Al-Damigh, S.A., 2017. Sufficiency Line in Saudi Arabia. Riyadh: King Khalid Foundation
2. Alsayyad, A.S., 2018. Social Protection in Saudi Arabia, Policy in Focus: International Policy Centre for Inclusive Growth 14(3): 64-67.
3. Augustine, 2016. Greying Saudi Arabia could multiply government’s debt burden. Retrieved September 12, 2018, from https://gulfnews.com/business/greying-saudi-arabia-could-multiply-governments-debt-burden-1.1860458 pp. 1
4. Berry, A., 2013. Social protection, growth and employment: A conceptual framework. Retrieved September 14, 2018, from
5. http://www.undp.org/content/dam/undp/library/Poverty%20Reduction/Inclusive%20development/Social%20protection,%20growth%20and%20employment/Draft8_SPG&E_web.pdf pp.1
6. Bohle, D. and B. Greskovits, 2007. Neoliberalism, embedded neoliberalism and
neocorporatism: Towards transnational capitalism in Central-Eastern Europe. West
European Politics 30(3): 443-466.
7. Bradshaw, J. and N. Finch, 2002. A Comparison of Child
Benefit Packages in 22 Countries. University of York.
8. Chang, H. J., 2002. Kicking Away the Ladder?: Policies and Institutions for Economic Development in Historical Perspective. London: Anthem Press.
9. Climate Scorecard, 2018.Saudi Arabia subsidies. Retrieved October 12, 2018, from https://www.climatescorecard.org/2018/01/saudi-arabia-subsidies/ pp.1
10. Crisil, 2015. Pension burden may rise to 4.1% of GDP by 2030: Crisil. Retrieved September 14, 2018, from https://www.businesstoday.in/money/investment/crisil-says-pension-burden-may-rise-gdp-by-2030/story/214296.html pp. 1
11. Dobelniece, S., 2017. Social Assistance: Comparative Analysis. Economic Science for Rural Development No 46: 54-61.
12. Ebbinghaus, B., 2012. Comparing Welfare State Regimes:Are Typologies an Ideal or Realistic Strategy? European Social Policy Analysis Network, ESPAnet Conference, Edinburgh, UK.
13. Editorial, 2017. Saudi Agriculture Ministry won’t withdraw bread subsidies. Retrieved October 22, 2018, from http://www.arabnews.com/node/1054156/saudi-arabia pp. 1
14. Editorial, 2018. Saudi Arabia unveils new housing programme to boost home ownership. Retrieved September 14, 2018,from https://www.thenational.ae/business/property/saudi-arabia-unveils-new-housing-programme-to-boost-home-ownership-1.702221 pp.1
15. ENS Economic Bureau, 2015. Subsidies helping the rich more: Economic Survey. Retrieved November 10, 2018, from https://indianexpress.com/article/business/budget/subsidies-helping-the-rich-more-economic-survey/ pp.1
16. Euvrard, F., 1989. 'Minimum income schemes: practical lessons'. Paper presented
at the European Conference on Basic incomes, 15-17 November, Cumberland
Lodge, UK.
17. Export.gov, 2018. Healthcare Resource Guide: Saudi Arabia. Retrieved October 19, 2018, fromhttps://2016.export.gov/industry/health/healthcareresourceguide/eg_main_108615.asppp.1
18. Fritzell. J., and O. Lundberg, (Eds.). 2007. Health, inequalities, welfare and resources. In:Fritzell J, Lundberg O, eds. Health inequalities and welfare resources. Bristol: Policy Press. 1–18. https://doi.org/10.1332/policypress/9781861347589.003.0001
19. Gayithri, K., 2007. A Study of Terminal Benefits of the Central Government Employees.
New Delhi: Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
20. Goswami, R., 2001. Indian Pension System: Problems and Prognosis. Paper presented in
the IAA Pensions Seminar, Brighton, June 5-7.
21. Guhan, S., 1994. Social Security Options for Developing Countries. International Labour Review
133 (1), 35-54.
22. Haggard, S., and R. Kaufman, 2008. Democracy, Development, and Welfare States: Latin America, East Asia and Eastern Europe. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press
23. Hantrais, L., 1995. Comparative Research Methods. Social Research Update. Issue 13. University of Surrey. Retrieved: http://sru.soc.surrey.ac.uk/SRU13.html.
24. HelpAge India, 2007. The social pension in India: A participatory study on the poverty reduction impact and role of monitoring groups. Retrieved November 10, 2018, from http://www.helpage.org/silo/files/the-social-pension-in-india-a-participatory-study-of-the-poverty-reduction-impact-and-role-of-monitoring-groups.pdf pp. 1-8
25. Jacobs, D., 1998. Social Welfare Systems in East Asia. CASE Paper no.10, Centre for
the Analysis of Social Exclusion, LSE, London.
26. Kabeer, N., 2002. Safety Nets and Opportunity Ladders: Addressing Vulnerability and Enhancing
Productivity in South Asia. Working Paper 159, Institute of Development Studies. Brighton: University
of Sussex. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-7679.00191
27. Kaul, V., 2014. Required: A new poverty line that shows 67% of India is poor. Retrieved November 10, 2018, from https://www.firstpost.com/economy/required-a-new-poverty-line-that-shows-67-of-india-is-poor-993241.html pp. 1
28. Kaul, V., 2015. 7th Pay Commission Report: What does govt 'really' spend its money on? Retrieved November 7, 2018, from https://www.equitymaster.com/dailyreckoning/detail.asp?date=11/23/2015&story=5&title=7th-Pay-Commission-Report-What-does-govt-really-spend-its-money-on pp. 1
29. Kennett, P., 2001. Comparative Social Policy: Theory and Research. Open University Press, Buckingham, Philadelphia.
30. Liebfried. S., 1991. Towards a European Welfare State: on integrating poverty,
regimes, Centre for Social Policy Research Working Paper No.2, Bremen:
University of Bremen.
31. Mabbett D. and H. Bolderson, 1999. ‘Theories and methods in comparative social policy’ in J
Clasen, Ed, Comparative Social Policy: Concepts, Theories and Methods, Blackwell, Oxford
32. Marmot M., 2007. Achieving health equity: from root causes to fair outcomes. The Lancet 370(9593):1153–1163. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(07)61385-3
33. Mohammed, I., 2013. Kingdom tops world in education spending. Retrieved November 10, 2018, from http://www.arabnews.com/saudi-arabia/kingdom-tops-world-education-spendingpp. 1
34. Nandi, A., 2016. Why pensions in India must not be given away for free. https://www.financialexpress.com/opinion/why-pensions-in-india-must-not-be-given-away-for-free/385602/pp. 1
35. Nereim, 2018. Saudi Arabia's $32 Billion Bid to Build Private Mortgage Market. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-02-05/saudi-arabia-s-32-billion-bid-to-build-private-mortgage-market pp. 1
36. Perper, 2018. Saudi Arabia is giving many of its citizens $3000 for free. Retrieved November 10, 2018, from https://www.aol.com/article/finance/2018/01/08/saudi-arabia-is-giving-many-of-its-citizens-dollar3000-for-free/23327277/pp. 1
37. Psacharopoulos, G., 1994. The perverse effects of public subsidization of education or How equitable is free education? Comparative education review 21: 69-90. https://doi.org/10.1086/445922
38. Ranganathan, N.M., 2017. Universal social pension for elderly individuals in India: Public expenditure requirements and fiscal sustainability. Indian Growth and Development Review, 10 (2): 89-116. https://doi.org/10.1108/IGDR-07-2017-0047
39. Rao, N. (2018, April 14). Who Is Paying for India's Healthcare? Retrieved September 12, 2018,from https://thewire.in/health/who-is-paying-for-indias-healthcare pp. 1
40. Schubert, B. C., and H. Martens, 2005. The Nordic Model: A Recipe for
European Success? EPC Working Paper No.20. Retrieved September 12, 2018, from http://www.epc.eu/pub_details.php?pub_id=56&cat_id=1 pp. 1
41. Sengoku, M., 2003. Emerging Eastern European Welfare States: A Variant of the
“European” Welfare Model? Retrieved December 1, 2018, from http://srch.slav.hokudai.ac.jp/coe21/publish/no2_ses/3-2_Sengoku.pdf pp. 2-3
42. Sfakianakis, John., 2008. Saudi to spend $3bn on food subsidies. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from http://www.tradearabia.com/news/FOOD_144984.html pp. 1
43. Shujauddin, M., 2014. Saudi Arabia health care market overview. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from https://build.export.gov/build/groups/public/@eg_us_mn/documents/webcontent/eg_us_mn_080855.pdf pp. 6-16
44. Shukla, 2017. Budget 2017: Spend on education sector seen falling short. Retrieved September 12, 2018, from https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/business/economy/budget-2017-spendeducation-sector-seen-falling-short-1004364.html pp. 1
45. Staff Writer, 2017. Saudi Arabia to spend $32bn on housing for citizens. Retrieved September 12, 2018, from https://www.arabianbusiness.com/saudi-arabia-spend-32bn-on-housing-for-citizens-659663.htmlpp. 1
46. Staff Writer, 2017. All you need to know about taxes in Saudi Arabia. Retrieved December 4, 2018, fromhttp://english.alarabiya.net/en/business/economy/2017/08/27/All-you-need-to-know-about-taxes-in-Saudi-Arabia.htmlpp. 1
47. The World Bank, 1994. Higher Education: The lessons of experiences, Washington, DC.
48. The World Bank, 2008. The Performance of Social Pensions in India: The Case of Rajasthan. Retrieved December 1, 2018, from http://siteresources.worldbank.org/SOCIALPROTECTION/Resources/SP-Discussion-papers/Pensions-DP/0834.pdf pp. 9-14
49. The world Bank, 2011. Social protection for a changing India. Retrieved December 4, 2018, from http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2011/05/18/social-protection-for-a-changing-india pp. 1
50. The World Bank, 2017. Data: Population Density. Retrieved October 19, 2018, from https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/EN.POP.DNST pp. 1
51. The World Factbook, 2018. Guide to Country Comparisons: Central Intelligence Agency. Retrieved October 19, 2018, from https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/docs/rankorderguide.htmlpp. 1