Why Saudi Arabia

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Meet the Kingdom

 

Saudi Arabia holds exciting potential and opportunity for investors. A G20 economy with a young, highly-educated population of more than 30 million people, it also boasts a strategic location at the heart of major trade routes crossing three continents and bountiful natural resources.

 

As part of Vision 2030, a wide range of economic reforms has succeeded in creating new business opportunities, leveraging Saudi Arabia’s key strategic assets, and driving economic growth and diversification.

 

Through Invest Saudi, Saudi Arabia defined its priority sectors and introduced an inclusive strategy for driving growth through investment. Subsequently, the Kingdom’s business environment has opened up and is transforming – reflected in the fact that Saudi Arabia rose 30 places in the World Bank’s most recent Ease of Doing Business report. No country in the world saw a faster rise, in such a short amount of time.

 

This momentum is a clear signal: Saudi Arabia is the future-forward economy, offering untapped potential and unique business opportunities

When numbers talk

Total Population
33.4 Million
Total Population
Percentage of Youth (Under 30)
Approx. 50%
Percentage of Youth (Under 30)
Population Growth Rate (next 5 years)
1.6%
Population Growth Rate (next 5 years)
Saudi labor force
3.2 Million
Saudi labor force
Nominal GDP
$ 782 Billion
Nominal GDP
GDP Per Capita
$ 23,570
GDP Per Capita
FDI inward stock
$230.8 Billion
FDI inward stock

Why Saudi Arabia?

  • In 2016, Saudi Arabia launched Vision 2030, a comprehensive plan aimed at growing and diversifying the Kingdom’s economy

  • The implementation of the Vision 2030 is detailed within 13 dedicated Vision Realization Programs, serving as unique roadmaps for the whole country

  • Private investment plays an essential role in realizing Vision 2030. Saudi Arabia aims to increase private sector contribution to GDP from 40% to 65% and FDI’s GDP contribution from 3.8% to 5.7%

  • The Vision 2030 strategy and developments, as well as the positive fundamentals of the Saudi economy, are providing an unprecedented opportunity for investors willing to grow their assets and to succeed worldwide

  • Saudi Arabia’s multiple growing sectors, such as tourism and entertainment, information technology, and financial services, will open new challenges, promising high returns for all investors

  • The government has launched a major privatization program aimed at unlocking state-owned assets and at increasing private investor participation
  • The localization of the value chain, involving both local and international parties, is another building block of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 plan, offering huge opportunities to investors
  • Large-scale and complex giga-projects, globally unique in scope and ambition, have been also launched, with the aim of transforming the Saudi economy and stimulating the growth of the country by acting as an incubator for vital sectors of the future
  • Government initiatives across different areas such as ease of doing business, social and cultural participation, and fiscal balance review show the undeniable commitment of the Kingdom in improving the whole business environment
  • Saudi Arabia has already implemented more than 57% of more than 400 economic reforms identified, including allowing 100% foreign ownership in a range of new sectors and significantly decreasing the amount of time it takes to obtain a license – now only requiring two documents and taking three hours
  • Vision 2030 is also opening up investment opportunities for companies of all scales and sizes. Saudi Arabia aims to increase SME GDP contribution from 20% to 35%, offering tailored programs and operating licenses for domestic and international entrepreneurs
  • Saudi Arabia enjoys a strategic natural location linking three continents, creating a central focal point for all international investors and providing connections to half of the world’s population within 5 hours travel
  • The Kingdom’s coastline meets thousands of miles of Red Sea waters, providing exclusive access to a vital trade route that captures over 12% of global trade flows. The largest Saudi seaport on the Red Sea is the second fastest growing in the world, making the Kingdom a critical logistics hub for all global trades
  • Work is already underway to optimize the transportation network, with the final goal of optimizing local facilities and cross-border interconnections, as well as ensuring the highest level of service for the full logistics ecosystem
  • A key enabler for the realization of the Vision 2030 is the rollout of an efficient digital infrastructure across all cities and towns that is integrated into the operations of all industries. This requires private sector collaboration on different areas such as telecommunications, cloud computing, high-speed broadband, and digital transformation
  • Saudi Arabia boasts a young, energetic, ambitious and highly educated population, with labor market participation increasing steadily
  • Education is the Saudi government’s single largest spending item, reflecting the Kingdom’s commitment to investing in the quality of its future leadership
  • Saudi Arabia’s university-aged population is rapidly expanding and is expected to reach a cohort of more than four million 18-to-24-year-olds by 2025
  • In line with Vision 2030, government decision-makers have recognized the need to engage private sector organizations to ensure higher education outcomes are aligned with job market requirements and offer a diverse range of professional development opportunities to students and working professionals alike
  • The Kingdom’s private education market is expected to increase from $5 billion USD in 2016 to $12 billion USD by 2023
  • Saudi Arabia features one of the lowest tax rates in the world with no individual income tax scheme in the country
  • The Kingdom has also been ranked among the safest countries in the world
  • Saudi Arabia also offers a high-quality healthcare system, with world-class facilities and services
  • Recent reforms aimed at enhancing the quality of life in the Kingdom have unlocked “first mover” opportunities – facilitating access to previously untapped opportunities across key sectors that are opening up for investment
  • Unprecedented social transformations and visionary infrastructure projects are unlocking investment potential in emerging sectors such as tourism – alongside increasing quality of life and providing domestic entertainment and cultural activities for citizens and residents to enjoy
  • Saudi Arabia enjoys a stable monetary system and a well-capitalized financial sector
  • The average banking sector Tier 1 capital-to-risk-weighted-assets ratio is approximately 8.5%, one of the most robust financial systems worldwide in terms of resilience and capital adequacy
  • The Saudi stock exchange, the Tadawul, is the largest in the region, with a market capitalization of more than $2 trillion USD
  • The recent regulatory reforms have led to the inclusion of Saudi Arabia’s stock market in the Emerging Market Index. The inclusion is expected to generate up to $17 billion USD of passive and up to $40 billion USD of active capital flows
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