Khalid Al-Falih was appointed as Saudi minister of investment after a royal decree issued on Feb. 25 created the new ministry.
He joined Saudi Aramco at the age of 19, and through the company went to Texas A&M University where he obtained a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering in 1982.
Nine years later, he gained a master’s degree in financial business administration from King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, in Dhahran, and in 1998 completed a Harvard business program in global leadership.
In 1995, Al-Falih was appointed as head of Saudi Aramco’s service department and later that year was given responsibility for running the maintenance department at the Ras Tanura refinery in the Eastern Province.
After assuming a number of different roles within the company, he was promoted to the position of vice director of its excavation works unit. Within four months he was appointed supreme vice president of Aramco’s gasworks department and was selected for a similar position in the firm’s industrial relations department 14 months later.
Al-Falih became the executive vice president for company operations in September 2007 and held the post for nearly a year before a royal decree appointed him as CEO of Aramco.
In 2015, a royal decree tasked Al-Falih to health minister in the Kingdom but just over a year later he returned to Saudi Aramco as chairman of the board of directors after Tawfiq Al-Rabiah was appointed as the country’s health minister. In April 2016, Al-Falih became chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Arabian Mining Co. (Maaden) and a few days later, a royal decree made him minister of energy, industry and mineral resources.
He was named on the Forbes list of The World’s Most Powerful People in 2016 and two years later the Japanese government awarded him its national decoration, The Order of the Rising Sun.