Saudi Arabia Extends Foreign Investment Licenses to 5 Years

Inside Saudi Arabia's Attempt to Attract Foreign Investment

Saudi Arabia extended foreign investment licenses to a renewable period of up to five years from one year, in the latest step to broaden the oil-dependent economy.

Ibrahim Al Suwayel, deputy governor for investors’ services at the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority, said the move aimed to bolster the country’s economic changes.

Officials have already seen “a positive effect on new investment, following the recent regulation to reduce the time taken to issue business licenses from two days to just four hours,” he said in a statement.

Saudi Arabia is entering a crucial year for Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s plan to remake the economy, dubbed Vision 2030, as officials try to raise government revenue without snuffing out economic growth. It introduced the 5 percent value-added tax on Jan. 1 alongside higher fees for foreign workers and subsidy cuts that drove up fuel and electricity prices.

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