In a strategic move to diversify its economy, Saudi Arabia introduced new residency programs on Thursday, targeting skilled professionals and investors. This initiative is part of the Kingdom’s ambitious Vision 2030 plan, spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, aimed at reducing the nation’s reliance on oil revenues.
The announcement outlined five premium residency programs, each tailored to attract professionals in sectors like healthcare, sports, and real estate. These programs offer several benefits, including the opportunity for participants to settle in Saudi Arabia, engage in business activities, own real estate, and secure work permits for both themselves and their family members.
This development is a significant step in Saudi Arabia’s broader economic transformation strategy. Vision 2030 encompasses a variety of objectives, including the attraction of foreign direct investment, to pivot the economy away from its traditional dependency on fossil fuels.
Additionally, this initiative arises in the context of intensifying economic competition with the United Arab Emirates (UAE), as both nations strive to become the predominant trade and business hub in the region. In response to similar incentives by the UAE, such as the ‘golden visa’ system and Dubai’s launch of a ‘family wealth center’ to assist wealthy individuals and businesses, Saudi Arabia’s new residency programs mark its commitment to enhancing its appeal as a destination for global talent and investment.
These programs represent a significant milestone in Saudi Arabia’s journey towards economic diversification and underscore its efforts to create a more dynamic and diversified economy by leveraging the expertise and investments of skilled professionals from around the world.