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Monday, March 4, 2024

‎Tourism Minister unveils program to lure local, international investments

Ahmed Al-Khateeb, Minister of Tourism

Minister of Tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb unveiled the Tourism Investment Enablers Program, which aims to facilitate doing business and raise the appeal of tourism investments for both local and international investors.

The Ministry of Tourism has also announced the Hospitality Investment Enablers Program, in cooperation with the Ministry of Investment, which aims to increase and diversify tourism offerings and raise the capacity of hospitality facilities in targeted tourist destinations across the Kingdom, state-run SPA reported.

The initiative seeks to attract private investments to the hospitality sector by about SAR 42 billion ($11 billion), with revenues estimated at about SAR 16 billion ($4 billion) to the Kingdom’s gross domestic product by 2030.

Furthermore, the initiative includes a package of strategic enablers tailored to enhance doing business and project viability. This includes facilitating access to government-owned lands under favorable terms, simplifying project development processes, and finding solutions to the challenges that investors may face. This is in addition to developing a set of regulations, part of the efforts made by the Ministry of Tourism, with the aim of reducing operating costs and promoting tourism growth.

The Hospitality Investment Enablers Program is expected to provide several benefits at the social and economic levels. This is by increasing the number of hotel rooms by about 42,000, while providing about 120,000 jobs in the target destinations by 2030, which will reflect positively on talent development and supporting localization efforts in the local labor market.

In addition, the Tourism Investment Enablers Program includes several other major initiatives such as the Tourism Investment One-Stop Shop, which is set to be launched later this year, in cooperation with the Saudi Business Center.

The Ministry of Tourism has cooperated with several partners in various government sectors to improve the investor journey, which has resulted in lowering annual government fees by about 22%. It is expected that fees will continue to decline in the near future, according to Al-Khateeb.

“Last year, we witnessed a 390% increase in demand for tourism activity licenses. Besides, the Kingdom is seen the highest spender in the tourism sector for the next 10 years, with the aim of providing opportunities and the appropriate investment environment for local and international investors,” he added.

The Kingdom has achieved one of the goals of the Saudi Vision 2030, which is to receive 100 million tourists during 2023, seven years ahead of schedule. The Tourism Investment Enablers Program is deemed a key impetus for achieving the ambitious new goal of receiving 150 million tourists annually by 2030.

Kaylie Pferten
Kaylie Pferten
A pilot of submersible crafts in a former life, now married to my husband David and writing about investment advice.

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