Saudi Arabia had announced multiple reforms in eight sectors which were being supervised by the World Bank.
Last week, there was an inauguration of the World Bank report on “Ease of Doing Business” in Saudi Arabia where various senior government officials, international diplomats, leading entrepreneurs and media was present. The presentation quality and the content were impressive.
The Commerce and Investment Ministry, led by Maid Al-Qasabi, was the main reason of these accomplishments in coordination and collaboration with other ministries. The World Bank report on “Ease of Doing Business” in Saudi Arabia was created on the basis of interviews with almost 50,000 international private-sector executives, who had found the Kingdom and made the utmost progress in the area of start-ups.
With regards to indicators, the Kingdom has come out with distinct rankings. For example, for setting up a new business, the Kingdom stood at the 38 position. It took the 28 ranking for receiving various permits, 18 place for electricity access, 19th position for property registrations, and the third rank for safeguarding minority investors. But, it slipped down a bit in regard to trading across borders (86 place), tax payments (57 position), enforcing contracts (51 rank), and resolving insolvency issues (168 place).
The result of this report has been mentioned is in the mainstream of the Saudi Vision 2030 mission, which aims to rely lesser on oil-based revenues and alongside implement the above-mentioned reforms to enhance revenues also from non-oil sectors and economic drivers. To go to the next level of reforms, Saudi Arabia should improve transparency even further, encourage fair competition and even better governance.
Though there is some degree of perplexity in the private sector of the country, which is still facing challenges in operating or establishing new businesses. Therefore, Saudi National Competitiveness Centre (NCC) should lay more emphasis on making the local sector completely aware of these improvements and how to take advantage from them in an effective and quick manner.
The announcement of this report is very timely with just a week for the Future Investment Initiative (FII) conference to happen and with various high-stature governmental delegations participating from the US, India, and Switzerland. It should offer more assurance in foreign direct investments (FDI) in various sectors in the nation.
The country and entrepreneurs should take advantage of the country’s rankings, while inviting international collaborations and partners to gain benefit from the new investment opportunities in Saudi Arabia.