illustration of economy with Saudi Arabia flag as background

Saudi Arabia launched four new Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to attract foreign investors and boost economic development under Vision 2030 strategy.

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Special Economic Cities and Zones Authority, Minister of Investment, Eng. Khalid Al-Falih, has expressed his gratitude to His Royal Highness Prince Mohammad bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince and Prime Minister, for launching four new Special Economic Zones (SEZs) in Saudi Arabia. These SEZs, strategically located across the Kingdom, are expected to reinforce Saudi Arabia’s position as a global business hub and play a significant role in achieving the country’s economic development goals under the Vision 2030 strategy.

SEZs are geographically defined areas that facilitate specific economic activities by providing competitive advantages and legislative frameworks that differ from the base economy. Saudi Arabia’s SEZs offer a bespoke regulatory and incentive scheme, including competitive corporate tax rates, duty-free imports of machinery and raw materials, 100% foreign ownership, seamless set-up procedures, and flexibility in employing foreign labor.

The four SEZs launched cover a wide range of industries, including advanced manufacturing and logistics, automobile supply chain and assembly, consumer goods, ICT, MedTech, industrial centers, key platforms for trade with fast-growing markets in Africa and Asia, maritime industry, offshore drilling, cloud computing, and emerging and disruptive technologies. Saudi Arabia’s favorable geographic location, young, highly educated population, expansive natural resources, and stable, rapidly growing capital markets add to the zones’ appeal, along with access to more than 70% of the world’s population within 8 hours.

Profile of the SEZs
The new SEZs, strategically situated across the Kingdom, are:

King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) SEZ:
The premier destination for advanced manufacturing and logistics, fro`m automobile supply chain and assembly to consumer goods, ICT to MedTech. Set in a prime location on the Red Sea, less than 90 minutes from Jeddah Airport, this 60 sq km site offers unrivalled access to global trade routes through King Abdullah Port, ranked the world’s most efficient by the World Bank in 2022. Anchor investor Lucid, a leader in the global EV industry, will produce 150,000 EVs a year from its base in KAEC SEZ.

Ras Al-Khair SEZ:
A launchpad on the Arabian Gulf for leaders in the maritime industry, Ras Al-Khair SEZ is a fully integrated marine ecosystem, with a rich network of existing investors – 40% of the zone is already spoken for – and myriad opportunities across shipbuilding and repair, offshore drilling and maritime value chains.

Cloud Computing KACST SEZ:
Located in King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST) the new Cloud Computing SEZ will serve as a hub for emerging and disruptive technologies. A direct manifestation of the Kingdom’s ‘Cloud First’ policy, the Cloud Computing SEZ underlines the Kingdom’s commitment to digital innovation and the fast-growing tech sector. The Zone is based around an innovative hybrid model that allows investors to establish physical data centres and cloud computing infrastructure in multiple locations within the Kingdom. It will open up new gateways for investors worldwide to capitalize on the rapidly growing global cloud market, expected to be worth US$34 billion by 2027.

Sourced from Saudi Press Agency