Wednesday, May 29, 2024
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Saudi Arabia continues to forge stronger bonds between its public and private sectors, with a significant step taken on Sunday. The National Center for Privatization (NCP) has inked a consequential agreement with Al-Rajhi Bank, heralding a strategic partnership that enhances opportunities surrounding privatization and public-private partnerships, both for local and international investors.

Hani Al-Saigh, the Vice President for Strategic Marketing and Knowledge Management at NCP, and Hossam Al-Basrawi, the General Manager of Corporate Banking at Al-Rajhi Bank, signed the landmark accord. This agreement propels collaborative efforts aimed at driving market research, financial guidance, local and international marketing consultancy, as well as event management, training programs, and knowledge development.

Al-Saigh emphasizes that this partnership stands as a pivotal addition to a series of collaborative alliances initiated by NCP, spanning both local and international banks and financial institutions.

Notably, this isn’t the first stride taken in this direction. In May, NCP entered into a collaboration with the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), a global banking giant boasting assets of $5 trillion, servicing 8 million corporate clients and 650 million retail users. This robust backing fortifies the NCP’s role in bolstering Public-Private Partnerships (PPP), a cornerstone of the privatization process in the Kingdom.

The collaboration with ICBC marks the sixth agreement NCP has sealed with local and foreign banks, as highlighted by NCP CEO Mohannad bin Basodan. He underscored the instrumental role such partnerships play in the success of privatization in Saudi Arabia.

In alignment with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 strategy, NCP unveiled its privatization and PPP pipeline in April. Comprising 200 approved projects across 17 sectors, this pipeline aligns with the vision’s ambitious goal of raising the private sector’s contribution to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) from 40 per cent to 65 per cent by 2030. With over $50 billion invested in the current pipeline and an additional 300 projects under evaluation, the future shines brightly on further growth potential.

These approved projects include the development of key airports in Abha, Taif, Hail, and Qassim, showcasing the multifaceted nature of Saudi Arabia’s privatization endeavours.

Amid Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 roadmap, privatization plays a pivotal role, marked by remarkable achievements—30 projects privatized over the past five years. This approach has not only transformed economic landscapes but also opened significant avenues for both local and international investors to participate actively in the Kingdom’s burgeoning sectors.

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