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Saudi Arabia Plays Globalization in its Favor | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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The Vision 2030 plan lays a roadmap for the Saudi economy in an era of low oil prices. (Reuters)

Riyadh – Saudi international trade expert Fawaz al-Alamy revealed that Saudi Arabia continues to reap the rewards of its adoption of free trade principles and market economy, becoming the third fastest growing economy in the world – after China and India – and playing globalization in its favor.

Alamy, former deputy commerce and industry minister, said that the kingdom’s agreements with the west and east were a strategic goal to reinforce economic integration with the growing international markets and prepare its economy to be among the 15 best economies in the world instead of its current 19th position.

“Saudi Vision 2030 focused on reducing Saudi dependency on oil as a sole source of income through reinforcing domestic content and doubling its percentage from 20 to 40 percent so that the kingdom becomes a safe destination for investors and an advanced center for international trade,” he said.

For this, the kingdom has adopted a plan to increase direct foreign investments up to 133 percent and to double the value of investments from SAR1.2 trillion (USD320 billion) to SAR2.3 trillion (USD613.3 billion), he revealed.

He added that this would raise the Saudi GDP to 200 percent in the next three years and increase non-oil exports from 16 to 50 percent of GDP. In addition, it would double non-oil revenues from SAR163 billion (USD43.3 billion) to SAR1 trillion (USD266.6 billion) by 2020.

“In 2016 report, the World Trade Organization (WTO) showed that Saudi Arabia ranked 16 in exports and 122 in imports among world countries. These results stress the importance of the kingdom’s geo-strategic position on the Rea Sea,” Alamy added.