Saudi Arabia: New Investment Law Being Drafted

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Saudi Arabia: New Investment Law Being Drafted

Saudi Gazette, 7 April 2022: Saudi Arabia’s Investment Ministry has announced it is drafting a new Investment Law.

The new Law will allow local and foreign investors to be treated equally.

The Ministry added they are currently completing studies on various provisions in the draft law.

It will come into force after the necessary approvals have been obtained from the higher authorities.

This is expected in the near future.

Foreign investors will have the freedom to manage, sell and dispose of their economic projects, as well as own properties to ensure the smooth operation of the economic project.

They will also have the freedom to conclude commercial contracts, acquire, liquidate or sell any company, facilitate procedures and provide facilities with the necessary support and assistance together with all of the relevant authorities.

Funds will be able to be transferred from inside and outside the Kingdom. These include transferring the proceeds and profits of economic projects and selling and liquidating them through regular channels using any currency recognised inside the Kingdom or disposing of it by any other legitimate means. It also includes protecting intellectual property, confidential commercial information and personal data and approaching the relevant courts or arbitration centres in the Kingdom.

Local and foreign investors will be subject to the same sectoral approval requirements for licenses and registration, as well as for approvals or permits for certain economic activities or special economic zones.

The confiscation of direct investments in whole or in part will be banned unless a relevant court ruling has been issued.

They will not be able to be expropriated in whole or in part except for the public benefit and in return for fair compensation either.

There will be provisions in the new law to impose fines of 500,000 Riyals on anyone who violates the Law or its Implementing Regulations.

They will be fined once they have been given a deadline to remedy the violations.

The investor’s registration or license will be cancelled as well and all or some of the investment facilities granted to the investor revoked.

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