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BBC World Service

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The daily drama of money and work from the BBC.


Women's Work in Saudi Arabia

January 20th, 2016

Episode 441 of 836 episodes

Now what's the toughest place in the world for a woman to find work? Well they don't come much tougher than Saudi Arabia. Only one in five workers there is a woman, and all kinds of restrictions apply it seems, from a deep-rooted cultural conservatism to practical challenges like where to find a women's toilet. We hear from two women who have experience of the country: Nancy Ruddy, co-founder of CetraRuddy, an architecture business based in New York that four years ago was contracted to help build a hotel and shopping complex in Jeddah; and Rawan Al-Butairi, a 28-year-old executive working with Aramco, the Saudi national oil firm. Also in the programme, we cross the Persian Gulf to take a look at Iran following the lifting of sanctions last weekend. We hear from one pistachio exporter in Tehran who's excited about the economic prospects that lie ahead, and from frontier investor Clemente Cappello of Sturgeon Capital. We ask about the risks and possible rewards for foreigners looking to invest their cash in the country. (Picture: A Saudi businesswoman speaks on her mobile; Credit: Fayez Nureldine/AFP/Getty Images)

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