Saudi Arabia’s new Special Economic Zones (SEZs) have attracted $12.6 billion from investors across maritime, mining, manufacturing and logistics, and tech, creating new value chains in the Kingdom.
An additional $31 billion in investment proposals are in progress for the SEZs, which were launched last month by HRH Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince, Prime Minister and Chairman of the Council for Economic and Development Affairs, said a statement.
The announcement was made at the Saudi Special Economic Zones Investment Forum, a showcase for Saudi Arabia’s four new Special Economic Zones (SEZs) that took place today (May 29) at the Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh, bringing together Saudi ministers, industry leaders, policymakers, international investors, and other representatives from the business community.
The event, which saw new Saudi Special Economic Zones licensed, was hosted by the Economic Cities and Special Zones Authority (ECZA), in partnership with the Saudi Program for Attracting Regional Headquarters of International Companies.
Eng Khalid Al-Falih, Minister of Investment and Chairman of ECZA Board, said: “We are pleased to host leading global companies and investors in Riyadh. The Forum has been a chance to demonstrate the significant opportunities the Kingdom provides across a wide range of important sectors and industries. The stature of the global companies in attendance today is testament to the strength of Saudi Arabia as a global investment destination, and the strong investment proposition of each of the four new Special Economic Zones.”
Nabil Khojah, Secretary General of ECZA, added: “The four Special Economic Zones are brand new, but have already attracted billions of Saudi riyals in investment, with more to come. This is an exciting moment for the Kingdom and for all of us at ECZA, as we unveil new opportunities for global investors to capitalize on Saudi Arabia’s position as an economic powerhouse at the heart of global trade routes.”
The forum’s themes focused on the kingdom’s strengths as a global investment destination: its favourable and competitive regulatory environment, strategic geographical position as a logistics and supply chain hub, and its hyper-connected digital infrastructure capable of supporting a global ICT and cloud computing ecosystem. The Forum also provided updates on the latest developments on the Regional Headquarters Program.
The new zones – King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) SEZ, Ras Al-Khair SEZ , Jazan SEZ, and Cloud Computing SEZ – are strategically located across the kingdom. Together, they represent the initial phase of a significant long-term programme of special economic zones. They complement the Riyadh Integrated Special Logistics Zone (RISLZ), which was launched in 2022.
The Saudi SEZs include competitive corporate tax rates, exemption from customs duties on imports, production inputs, machinery & raw materials, 100% foreign ownership of companies, and the flexibility to attract and hire the best talent worldwide.
The Regional Headquarters Program was established in 2020 to invite global companies' regional headquarters to relocate to Saudi Arabia. It is a joint initiative between the Ministry of Investment (MISA) and the Royal Commission for Riyadh City (RCRC). - TradeArabia News Service