- What are the requirements that you need to create your own business?
Foreigners wishing to set up their own business in Saudi Arabia can now obtain a license for doing business in KSA and to have 100% of the ownership. The new business owner will have to invest share capital of at least 500,000 SAR and secure a bricks and mortar office in the Kingdom before full registration is accepted. It can be a long process and some patience, forethought and planning are essential so that the inevitable delays do not impact the businesses’ commercial strategy.
- Who is eligible in creating their own business and offices in KSA?
As above, the criteria for a successful company set up is relatively onerous but that said there are few restrictions on eligibility. Any business trying to setup in the Kingdom will need the initial support of MISA which can be expedited with a well-presented business plan. At the initial registration phase, they will also need to provide their last fiscal year’s accounts indicating a sustainable and profitable business which will also be subject to scrutinisation from the Chamber of Commerce.
- How can you make your first steps in entering the KSA market?
For some foreign investors that perhaps want to try the KSA market first without the financial and time obligations necessary to establish an LLC there is the option of appointing a commercial local agent who would basically be responsible for the distribution of the product within the defined jurisdiction.
This commercial agency agreement is the quickest way to enter the Saudi market because it allows foreigners to do business (via the Agent) without the need to register a legal entity or secure a foreign investment license through MISA.
- What kind of businesses are now trending in KSA?
Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, has already created billions of dollars’ worth of trade and investment opportunities for foreign companies across a wide array of key industries away from the traditional sectors of defense and petrochemicals.
These include real estate, hospitality, sports and recreation, education, healthcare, sustainability and construction.
The government plans to construct multiple schools and healthcare facilities over the next five years and will also focus its investment into developing economic cities, industrial hubs and healthcare facilities. There is also a growing creative and technological wave of startups and small to medium sized private enterprises that are being sponsored and actively supported through various grants and loan programmes.