The following Competition practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
A conversation with Nicolas Bremer, partner at regional law firm BREMER, on key issues on foreign direct investment (FDI) control in Saudi Arabia.
The principal legislations governing foreign investment in Saudi Arabia are Royal Decree M1/1421H on Foreign Investment in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (the FDI Law) and the Executive Regulations on the Foreign Investment Law (the Regulations). These establish a more traditional FDI regime that relies predominantly on providing incentives for foreign investment in some sectors and restricting or prohibiting engagement of foreign investors in other sectors. Incentives as well as some restrictions and prohibitions are aimed at economic goals. Through incentives Saudi Arabia seeks to entice foreign investment into specific sectors to grow industries that are underrepresented in the Saudi economy and attract talent, know-how and technology. Through restricting certain sectors the Kingdom aims to preserve some sectors of its economy for Saudi investment, thereby, securing revenues for its population. Other restrictions and prohibitions aim at protecting sectors that are of strategic importance to Saudi Arabia for economic, political—including social morals—security and other reasons from foreign influence.
There are some rumours about reforms that would establish an active FDI review regime similar to those recently emerging in European jurisdiction. Currently, Saudi law does not provide for such an FDI review process. Still, we have recently FDI
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