Saudi Arabia to Open Up Stock Market to Foreign Investors

By Bizclik Editor

Foreign investors will be entering Saudi Arabia’s $531 billion stock market after the government sanctioned the relaxation of foreign ownership restrictions.

According to the country’s official news agency SPA, the kingdom’s cabinet has allowed foreign financial institutions to buy and sell stocks directly on the Tadawul All Share Index during the first half of next year.

Currently only one percent of Saudi stocks are foreign-owned, unlike neighbours Qatar and the UAE where overseas investors hold significant interest in native companies. Saudi Arabia is home to enormous blue chip companies such as Saudi Arabia Basic Industries and Kingdom Holding.

Speculation over a move such as this was fuelled back in 2008 when foreign investors were given permission to buy and sell shares via swap agreements with authorised companies.

The scheme was shunned by many participants as it required them to trade stocks through intermediaries and excluded some of the benefits of share ownership, such as voting rights.

A 10 percent relaxation in foreign ownership rules could lure in up to $50 billion from abroad according to private equity firms in the Middle East, with specific details on the rules due sometime in August.

This could also bring benefits to the likes of the UAE and Qatar. 

Share

Featured Articles

Top 10 metaverse projects in the UAE, including world firsts

As Accenture predicts the metaverse will fuel a US$1 trilion commerce opportunity by 2025, we round up 10 pioneering metaverse projects in the UAE

PwC’s survey shows Middle East CEOs remain upbeat on growth

CEOs in the Middle East are far more optimistic about regional growth than those in North America and Europe, according to PwC’s annual survey

Opinion: “Why we must tackle the digital skills crisis"

Upskilling for the digital world isn’t complicated but it is urgent, argues Tom Moore, CEO of WithYouWithMe – a social impact tech firm founded by veterans

5 Mins With: Kathryn Kaminsky Vice Chair Trust Solutions PwC

Leadership & Strategy

Survey: The Future of Cloud Security in the Middle East

Technology

Deloitte US Chief Purpose Officer on driving impact at scale

Leadership & Strategy