Saudi Arabia's Vision2030 is a strategic framework to reduce Saudi Arabia's dependence on oil, diversify its economy, and develop public service sectors, including tourism. Under Vision2030, the NTP, a coordinating unit involving 24 Saudi government entities, aims to develop the government capacity and capabilities required to establish the necessary legal and physical infrastructure to achieve Vision2030's goals.
In the context of the Saudi tourism sector, the NTP aims at marketing Saudi Arabia as a tourist destination regionally and globally through the development of advanced infrastructure, the preparation of the necessary regulations and legislation, and the building of institutional capacities, all of which should contribute to creating jobs and increasing the contribution of the tourism sector to the Kingdom's economy. But the NTP recognizes that the development of the Saudi tourism sector faces a number of challenges, including:
The Tourism Development Fund
Preliminary Comments. The Tourism Development Fund Law ("Law") provides in part that the Law will not come into force until 90 days after the Law's publication in the Saudi Arabian Official Gazette. The Law was published on June 26, 2020, and therefore came into force on September 23, 2020.
Investment, Financing, and Advice. The authority of the Fund includes (but is not limited to) the authority to invest its funds in assets, to provide financing to businesses operating in the tourism sector or related sectors, and to provide advice to businesses operating in the tourism sector or related sectors.
The Board is the authority responsible for establishing the Fund's policies. Until such policies are established, the terms upon which the Fund may provide financing will remain unknown. However, we would speculate (and this is only speculation) that the Fund will be to the Saudi tourism industry what the Saudi Industrial Development Fund is to Saudi industry: a source of medium- and long-term soft loans whose terms will vary with the location and the size of the project being financed.
Tourism is a key driver of Vision2030, and the Fund can reasonably be expected to play an important role in attracting and supporting investments, incentivizing the development of, and overcoming some of the challenges facing the Saudi tourism sector. Businesses (whether domestic or international) involved in the tourism sector or related sectors should closely follow the development of the Fund.
His Excellency Ahmed Al-Khateeb, Minister of Tourism and Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Tourism Development Fund (TDF), today praised the Fund’s achievements since its establishment last year, which are contributing significantly to the progress of Saudi Arabia’s National Tourism Strategy (NTS).
The Tourism Development Fund (TDF) and Ennismore today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the 5th Future Investment Initiative (FII) in Riyadh to explore the establishment of a USD 400 million (SAR 1.5 billion) fund that would bring Ennismore’s lifestyle brands to at least 12 destinations in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia's Tourism Development Fund (TDF) signed two financing agreements with Dallah Al-Baraka Group and Dallah Real Estate Company, to develop a tourism project at the Durrat Al-Arous resort in Jeddah, accordign to an emailed statement.
The Tourism Development Fund (TDF) and Seera Group today signed a financing agreement to establish and operate the Raghadan Tourist Resort, the first sustainable tourism project in the Al Baha region – one of the main investment destinations identified under Saudi Arabia’s National Tourism Strategy.