S A U D I A R A B I A : F O R E I G N C A P I T A L I N V E S T M E N T L A W * Saudi Arabia’s long-awaited new Foreign Capital Investment Law was approved by the Cabinet on 10 April 2000. This signals a radical shift in the procedures and attitudes towards foreign capital investment in the Kingdom. The Cabinet also approved the setting up of a General Committee for Investment (GCI) to be in charge of all the Kingdom’s investments, both national and foreign, under the directive of the Supreme Economic Council (SEC). The main aim of the new Law is to encourage, attract and remove the obstacles to foreign investment, in order to diversify the country’s activities away from its mainly oil-dependent economy. This is in direct contrast with the existing legislation, which restricts foreign capital investment to certain narrowly defined categories. The law allows foreign investors to have 100 per cent ownership of industrial projects instead of the 49 per cent maximum holdings allowed previously. In addition, foreigners can own real estate for practising their activities or for housing
Arab Law Quarterly – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2001
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