This chapter includes the following articles.
Firming oil prices have brought about an improvement in Saudi Arabia’s trade balance in 2018. The government’s longer-term ambition, however, is to protect itself from the uncertainty of the energy market by diversifying the export base away from hydrocarbons. The Kingdom’s newly formulated economic strategy also aims to boost foreign investment, thereby reducing the economy’s dependence on public spending. Both of these objectives are being pursued through a cross-government effort that is reshaping Saudi Arabia’s business environment. The changes being made to the legislative and regulatory frameworks that govern trade and investment bode well for economic growth in the long term, although concrete results in the short term have yet to be secured. This chapter contains an interview with Ibrahim Al Omar, Governor, Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority.