Saudi Vision 2030, the KSA’s plan to diversify the kingdom’s oil-dependent economy could attract up to $1 trillion in inward foreign direct investment (FDI) over the next 15 years, according to analysts at the Oxford Strategic Consulting, Oxford Economics and Control Risks (OECR).
First unveiled in April last year by Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud, Vision 30 originally included more than 80 projects aimed at encouraging overall economic and investment activity; increasing non-oil international trade, particularly of goods and consumer products; and increasing government spending on military manufacturing equipment and ammunition, all as part of a strategy of creating a diversified economy underpinned by an invigorated private sector whose contribution to GDP the authorities hope to grow from 40% to 65% by the end of the next decade.
Since then the Council of Economic and Development Affairs (CEDA) has identified 10 programs it considers key to Saudi Vision 2030’s success :
- Leadership: To motivate more than 100 national companies that have promising chances in regional and international leadership and working on enhancing their statuses in a way that positively reflects on the Kingdom’s image and economy.
- Industry and logistics: To develop national industry and logistical services and to improve the country’s infrastructure.
- Investment: To strengthen the role of the public investment fund.
- Partnerships: To establish and deepen economic partnerships with strategic partnership countries.
- Financial sector: To develop Saudi Arabia’s capital markets and improve their standing and reputation at both regional and global level.
- Privatization: To enhance the role of the private sector in providing services, enhancing quality and lowering costs.
- Quality of life: To provide a dignified life for Saudi families by enabling them to own houses that match their needs and financial capabilities.
- Pilgrimages: To provide the largest number of Muslims with the opportunity to perform Haj and Umrah and visit the holy sites.
- Lifestyle: To improve individuals’ lifestyle by modernizing the means that enhance citizens’ and residents’ participation in activities related to culture, entertainment and sports.
- National identity: To develop and strengthen individuals’ national identity on the bases of Islamic and national values and to strengthen personal characteristics that motivate people to succeed and be optimistic.
“Saudi Arabia is embarking on a radical transition that promises to open up many economic opportunities for investors,” said OECR Middle East analyst Graham Griffiths, “but the kingdom will remain a challenging environment to work in, as the traditional way of doing business – both within the government and in the private sector – comes face to face with the new economic model. Informed analysis of the rapidly changing political, economic and social landscape in the kingdom will be vital to seizing the opportunities presented.”