Saudi Arabia has ushered in an era of entrepreneurship with new opportunities for foreign investors and SME’s. A set of new regulations accompanied the Saudization and Vision 2030 reforms, allowing for the private sector to boom and for the economy to shift radically as a result. As the Kingdom further embraces entrepreneurial opportunities, its vision for an oil-dependent economy becomes a reality.
Among many new regulatory trends that shaped the age of Saudization was the Kingdom’s facilitation of foreign investment; the permission for UK, Schengen and U.S. visa holders to enter the Kingdom with a visa on arrival was a step towards opening Saudi Arabia up for the global market. Foreign investors can now visit the Kingdom and see the great entrepreneurial potential its market offers. Recent reports have revealed that over 400,000 visas were granted since the fourth quarter of 2019.
Over the past 18 months, Saudi Arabia has shown a great commitment to entrepreneurship as a new foundation to its economy. In 2020, the Kingdom will host over 50 conferences and forums, tallying up to an estimated 250,000 visitors in the next 10 months. This further contributes to the new image of Saudi Arabia, and more importantly brings in potential investors whose businesses ultimately take part in ending unemployment of Saudi nationals in light of Saudization regulations. Recent reports have revealed that over 400,000 visas were granted since the fourth quarter of 2019.
Along the same lines is the entertainment aspect of the Vision 2030 plan; the Kingdom began its new era by providing the medium for art and music to be more easily accessible. Big stars from music, art, sports and television have visited Saudi Arabia since the Vision 2030 started its execution phase, and the number of festivals and concerts grew larger as the plans advanced. The move comes as a sign for Saudi Arabia’s readiness to receive various business opportunities and cater to those businesses’ market needs.
Recent numbers and statistics have shown that Riyadh offers a wide pool of jobs and businesses. Today, other cities are on the same trajectory as well. In recent news, Jeddah was revealed to expect a massive growth by 2024. The city is adding up to 40,000 square meters to its leasable areas, as its local businesses show growth and global brands begin to set up locations in Jeddah. Soon, more locations around Saudi Arabia will become tourist attractions, as the government plans to increase the number of heritage sites in the Kingdom. This enforces the plans to make Saudi Arabia a cultural hub, diversify its economy with tourism and business and provide a culture that nurtures entrepreneurship.