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Saudi Arabia Foreign Investment Law



The following expressions and terms shall have the meaning ascribed beside each, unless the context deems otherwise: 

The Council:
  The Supreme Economic Council

The President:  
   The President of the Supreme Economic Council

The Board of Directors:
   The Board of Directors of the General Investment Authority.

The Authority:  
The General Investment Authority

The Governor: 
The Governor of the General Investment Authority

The Rules:  
The Rules of Implementation of this Order


The main objective of the Authority is to oversee investment affairs in the Kingdom including foreign investment. This includes, without limitation to its powers, the following functions:

 1.   Preparation of state policies in the field of developing and enhancing local and foreign investment, and its submission to the Council.

2.   Proposing executing schemes and criteria that shall improve the investment climate in the Kingdom and its submission to the Council.

3.   Monitoring and evaluating the performance of local and foreign investment, and drafting a periodical report in this regard, the report’s items are determined by the Rules.

4.   Conducting studies about investment opportunities in the Kingdom and promoting them.

5.   Coordinating and cooperating with pertinent governmental bodies to enable the Authority  to accomplish its mission.

6.   Organizing conferences, symposiums, local and international exhibitions and workshops relevant to investment and the formation and participation in it.

7.   Developing databases and carrying out statistical surveys required for the conduct of its functions.

8.   Any tasks officially assigned to the Authority.


  The Board of Directors of the Authority shall be formed as follows:

 1. The Governor

2.   A Representative from the Ministry Interior  

3.   A Representative from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

4.  A Representative from the Ministry of Commerce.

5.  A Representative from the Ministry of Agriculture & Water.

6. A Representative from the Ministry of Petroleum & Mineral    Resources.

7. A Representative from Ministry of Industry &  Electricity.

8. A Representative from the Ministry of Finance & National Economy. 

9.A Representative from the Ministry of Planning.

10. A Representative from the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs.

11.A Representative from the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency  Member 

  Two members of the private sector are appointed by a decision by the Chairman upon a nomination by the Governor.

  Representatives of government bodies in the Board of Directors shall not be less in rank than the fourteenth.  Membership tenure in the Board of Directors shall only be for three years.



The Board of Directors is the governing power over the Authority’s affairs, the conduct of its business, and renders all relevant decisions necessary for realizing its objectives within the provisions of this Order.  It shall be specifically charged with the following:

1.     Deciding on investment applications and their termination.

2.     Proposing a list of types of activities excluded from foreign investment and submitting it to the Council.  

3.     Approval of by-laws, financial and administrative rules and the organizational structure of the Authority, which will ensure the systematic progress of its works.

4.     Supervision and revision of the administrative and financial management of the Authority.

5.    Approval of the Authority’s budget plan and its final statement of account, the report of the comptroller and the annual report, in preparation for its submission according to regulations.

6.   Forming committees by members of the Board of Directors and others to perform the duties assigned to the Authority as may be decided by the Board of Directors.

7.   To examine the matters referred to it by the Governor and the committees formed by the Board of Directors.

8.   Proposing the amendment of this Order and other regulations pertaining to investment.

9.   Delegating officials of the Authority to sign the various agreements and contracts within the limits determined by the Board of Directors.

10. Endorsing the Authority’s work plan and its operational scheme.

11. Accepting donations, endowments, grants and aids.



The Board of Directors shall hold its meetings upon an invitation by the Governor at least once each month.  The Governor shall invite the Board of Directors when requested by at least half the members. The invitation shall include an agenda.  A valid quorum requires the presence of the majority of members including the Chairman of the Board of Directors or a member including the Chairman of the Board of Directors or a member representing him; resolutions are issued by a majority of present votes.  Whenever the votes are equally divided, the casting vote shall be that of the Chairman.  The Board of Directors has the right to invite to its meetings those whom it deems to benefit from their knowledge and experiences without having the right to vote.  Proceeding and resolutions of the Board of Directors shall be entered in minutes signed by the Chairman and present members.

The Board of Directors shall not have the right to issue resolutions by independent submissions to members except when necessary, provided, in such case, a  written unanimous consent members of the Board of Directors for the resolution is obtained. The resolution shall be presented to the Board of Directors in its first subsequent meeting to be entered in the minutes of the meeting.



The Authority shall have a Governor in the rank of a minister appointed by a royal decree upon the Chairman’s nomination.



The Governor shall be the executive officer responsible for managing the Authority and conducting its business.  His responsibilities are primarily within the context of this Order and those decided by the Board of Directors.  He is vested with the following powers:

  1. Overseeing preparations for the Board of Directors’ meetings.
  1. Monitoring the implementation of the Board of Directors; resolutions.
  1. Drafting the Authority’s plan, the final statement of account and the annual report in preparation of its submission before the Board of Directors.
  1. Supervising the Authority’s employees, staff and workers according to his vested powers and rules.
  1. Issuing orders on the Authority’s expenditures according to the approved annual budget.
  1. Submitting periodical reports to the Board of Directors concerning the business of the Authority, its achievements and activities.
  1. Proposing the Authority’s strategies and programs and supervising of its discharge after being approved by the Board of Directors.
  1. Representing the Authority before other government bodies and others.

  The Governor has the right to delegate some of these powers to other officials of the Authority.



  1.  A Comprehensive Service Center shall be established at the Authority, consisting of liaison offices including full-time representatives for all government departments with relation to investment, i.e. the Ministries of Interior (The General Directorate of Passports, The General Administration for Recruitment), Foreign Affairs, Commerce, Industry and Electricity, Finance and National Economy (Zakat and Income Department, Saudi Industrial Development Fund), Agriculture and Water, Labor and Social Affairs (Labor & Laborer’s Office), Petroleum and Mineral Resources.  The Board shall the right to amend the parties mentioned in this Order upon a proposal from the Board of Directors.


  1. The above mentioned Comprehensive Service Center shall operate under the supervision of the Governor.  It shall extend its services to investors in a manner that ensures consolidating the locale for application reception and processing, prompt finalization of the affairs and issuance of licenses, approvals, visas and residence permits required for practicing the activity.




The Authority shall have an independent budget issued in accordance with the issuance of the general state budget and the Authority’s funds shall consist of the following:


1.The allotted appropriations in the state budget.

2 Income derived by the Authority from conducting an activity that falls within its objectives.

3. Any other funds which the Board of Directors may accept, i.e. donations, endowments, grants and aid. 

4.All movables and immovable properties passed to it from the Saudi Consulting Services House.

 The Authority’s funds shall be deposited in an independent account and discharged in accordance with the Authority’s financial regulations.



The fiscal year of the Authority is as the state fiscal year, save for the first fiscal year of the Authority which shall start as of the date this Order come into effect.



Without prejudice to the right of the Comptroller General in monitoring the Authority’s accounts, the Board of Directors shall appoint one or more comptrollers either being natural or body corporate licensed to work in the Kingdom and shall determine their fees.  Should there be more than one comptroller then they shall be jointly liable for their activities before the Authority.  The comptroller’s report shall be addressed to the Board of Directors with a copy to the Board of the Comptroller General.



The Board of Directors shall issue the Rules within thirty days as from the date this Order is issued.  It shall be published in the Office Journal and shall be effective as of the dated of its publishing.



This Order shall be published in the Official Journal and shall be effective thirty days after its publishing and shall invalidate any contradicting provisions.

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05 November 2001 05:41:31 PM