Regulations to be amended to grant expats right to invest in Saudi Arabia

Majed Al-Qassabi, minister of trade and investment. (SPA)
Updated 28 February 2017
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Regulations to be amended to grant expats right to invest in Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: The Saudi Ministry of Trade and Investment will assess a plan to amend regulations to allow expatriates to invest in the Kingdom within specific regulations and standards in addition to paying taxes.
Majed Al-Qassabi, minister of trade and investment, said the move will lead to the elimination of the phenomenon of commercial cover-up in the country.
He said during the launch of the “growth-parallel market” that the ministry “intended to attract quality foreign investment to create new jobs and contribute to the transfer of knowledge to Saudi Arabia.”
Mohammed bin Abdullah Al-Kuwaiz, vice chairman of the Capital Market Authority, said that the parallel market will precede the main market to be available to various categories of foreign investors in the future.
“The Capital Market Authority is currently working with ‘Tadawul’ to prepare all the legal and technical aspects. The declaration of the schedule is expected during the second quarter of this year,” Al-Kuwaiz said.
He added that Saudi Aramco’s launch on the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) depends on the inclusion of the market in emerging global markets indices, which requires regulatory and structural aspects.
Al-Kuwaiz said the launch of the growth-parallel market provides funding through the financial market for a new class of companies and productive projects. He added: “It is considered a channel to diversify investments and increase the pace of investment to establish new projects.”
Al-Kuwaiz pointed out that the number and size of companies that are trading are equal to or greater than those achieved in the days following the launch of other parallel markets around the world.


World applauds as Saudi women take the wheel

A Saudi woman and her friends celebrate her first time driving on a main street of Alkhobar city in eastern Saudi Arabia on her way to Bahrain on June 24, 2018. (AFP / HUSSAIN RADWAN)
Updated 11 min 24 sec ago
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World applauds as Saudi women take the wheel

  • As the de facto ban on women driving ended after more than 60 years, women across the Kingdom flooded social media with videos of their first car trips
  • The celebrations even reached as far as France, where Aseel Al-Hamad, the first female member of the Saudi national motorsport federation, drove a Formula 1 racing car in a special parade before the French Grand Prix at Le Castellet 

JEDDAH: The world awoke on Sunday to images and video footage many thought they would never see — newly empowered Saudi women taking the wheel and driving their cars.

As the de facto ban on women driving ended after more than 60 years, women across the Kingdom flooded social media with videos of their first car trips, while some police officers among the large number out on the streets distributed roses to the first-time drivers.

The celebrations even reached as far as France, where Aseel Al-Hamad, the first female member of the Saudi national motorsport federation, drove a Formula 1 racing car in a special parade before the French Grand Prix at Le Castellet.

“I hope doing so on the day when women can drive on the roads in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia shows what you can do if you have the passion and the spirit to dream,” she said.

In a tribute to Saudi female drivers, the Lebanese soprano Hiba Tawaji released a special video of a song she performed live in Riyadh at a concert last December “Today women in Saudi Arabia can legally drive their cars,” she said. “Congratulations on this achievement, this one’s for you!”

Back home in Saudi Arabia, the atmosphere was euphoric. “It’s a beautiful day,” businesswoman Samah Algosaibi said as she cruised around the city of Alkhobar. 

“Today we are here,” she said from the driver’s seat. “Yesterday we sat there,” she said, pointing to the back.

“I feel proud, I feel dignified and I feel liberated,” said Saudi Shoura Council member Lina Almaeena, one of the first women to drive in the Kingdom.

She told Arab News that the event was changing her life by “facilitating it, making it more comfortable, making it more pleasant, and making it more stress-free.”

Almaeena urged all drivers to follow the traffic and road safety rules. “What’s making me anxious is the misconduct of a lot of the drivers, the male drivers. Unfortunately they’re not as disciplined as they should be. Simple things such as changing lanes and using your signals — this is making me anxious.

“But I’m confident: I’ve driven all around the world when I travel, especially when I’m familiar with the area. It’s really mainly how to be a defensive driver because you have to be.”