The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is the largest economy in the Arab world, accounting for 25% of the Arab Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Saudi Arabia has an oil-based economy with strong Government controls over major economic activities. The Kingdom possesses around 25% of the world’s oil reserves and plays a leading role in the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
Saudi Arabia is the largest free economic market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. It is a key member of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and has free trade agreements with the Greater Arab Free Trade Area (GAFTA), the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), as well as Singapore.
Saudi Arabia has the largest economy and population in the Gulf region and with 50% of Saudis under 25 years-old, the Saudi population is also one of the fastest growing in the world. The current population of over 28 million is expected to increase to 29 million by the end of 2020. Massive investment is required to meet the needs of this growing population.
As part of its ambitious socio-economic reforms, collectively known as ‘Vision 2030’, the Saudi Arabian government seeks foreign investment that explicitly promotes economic development, transfers foreign expertise and technology to Saudi Arabia, creates jobs for Saudi nationals, and increases Saudi Arabia’s non-oil exports. It encourages investment across nearly all economic sectors, with priority given to chemicals, industrial, and manufacturing; transport and logistics; information and communication technology; healthcare and life sciences; water and waste management; energy; education; tourism, entertainment and sports; real estate; financial services; and mining and metals.
Saudi officials have also stated their intention to attract foreign small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to the Kingdom. To facilitate and promote the growth of the SME sector, a new Companies Law was issued in 2016. Saudi Arabia’s financial policies generally facilitate the free flow of private capital and currency can be transferred in and out of the Kingdom without restriction.
Sovereign Corporate Services provides a comprehensive set of services for company formation and business set-up in the Kingdom, together with a range of resourcing, recruitment and HR services, and ongoing business support.