1.2.4 Achieving environmental sustainability
By preserving our environment and natural resources, we fulfill our Islamic, human and moral duties. Preservation is also our responsibility to future generations and essential to the quality of our daily lives. We will seek to safeguard our environment by increasing the efficiency of waste management, establishing comprehensive recycling projects, reducing all types of pollution and fighting desertification. We will also promote the optimal use of our water resources by reducing consumption and utilizing treated and renewable water. We will direct our efforts towards protecting and rehabilitating our beautiful beaches, natural reserves and islands, making them open to everyone. We will seek the participation of the private sector and government funds in these efforts.
Among our goals by 2030: · To have three Saudi cities be recognized in the top-ranked 100 cities in the world · To increase household spending on cultural and entertainment activities inside the Kingdom from the current level of 2.9% to 6% · To increase the ratio of individuals exercising at least once a week from 13% of population to 40%
We intend to embed positive moral beliefs in our children’s characters from an early age by reshaping our academic and educational system. Schools, working with families, will reinforce the fabric of society by providing students with the compassion, knowledge, and behaviors necessary for resilient and independent characters to emerge. The focus will be on the fundamental values of initiative, persistence and leadership, as well as social skills, cultural knowledge and self-awareness. We will also promote cultural, social, volunteering and athletic activities through empowering our educational, cultural and entertainment institutions.
1.3.3 Empowering our society
We will continue modernizing our social welfare system to make it more efficient, empowering and just. Subsidies for fuel, food, water and electricity will be better utilized by redirecting them towards those in need. We will provide our most vulnerable citizens with tailored care and support. Together with the private sector and non-governmental organizations, we will offer preparation and training to those unable to find employment so they can smoothly join the workforce whenever possible.
1.3.4 Caring for our health
Among our commitments: Corporatization: efficient and high quality health care Our goal is to enhance the standard and quality of health care services. Our aim is a health care sector that promotes competition and transparency among providers. This will enhance the capability, efficiency and productivity of care and treatment and increase the options available to our citizens. To achieve this goal, we will introduce corporatization into the sector by transferring the responsibility for health care provision to a network of public companies that compete both against each other and against the private sector. This will provide our citizens with the highest quality of health care while, at the same time, allowing the government to focus on its legislative, regulatory and supervisory roles. Corporatization shall also promote and prioritize specialization in health care services and enable citizens to choose their preferred service provider.
The skills and competencies of our children are one of the most important and cherished assets. To make the most of their potential, we will build a culture that rewards determination, provides opportunities for all and helps everyone acquire the necessary skills to achieve their personal goals. To this end, we will reinforce the ability of our economy to generate diverse job opportunities and institute a new paradigm in attracting global talents and qualifications.
We will continue investing in education and training so that our young men and women are equipped for the jobs of the future. We want Saudi children, wherever they live, to enjoy higher quality, multi-faceted education. We will invest particularly in developing early childhood education, refining our national curriculum and training our teachers and educational leaders. We will also redouble efforts to ensure that the outcomes of our education system are in line with market needs. We have launched the National Labor Gateway (TAQAT), and we plan to establish sector councils that will precisely determine the skills and knowledge required by each socio-economic sector. We will also expand vocational training in order to drive forward economic development. Our scholarship opportunities will be steered towards prestigious international universities and be awarded in the fields that serve our national priorities. We will also focus on innovation in advanced technologies and entrepreneurship.
Our economy will provide opportunities for everyone — men and women, young and old — so they may contribute to the best of their abilities. We will place a renewed emphasis on lifelong training and we will seek to make the most of the potential of our workforce by encouraging a culture of high performance. These efforts will be coordinated by the recently established Job Creation and Anti-Unemployment Commission.
One of our most significant assets is our lively and vibrant youth. We will guarantee their skills are developed and properly deployed. While many other countries are concerned with aging populations, more than half of the Saudi population is below the age of 25 years. We will take advantage of this demographic dividend by harnessing our youth’s energy and by expanding entrepreneurship and enterprise opportunities.
Saudi women are yet another great asset. With over 50percent of our university graduates being female, we will continue to develop their talents, invest in their productive capabilities and enable them to strengthen their future and contribute to the development of our society and economy.
We will also enable those of our people with disabilities to receive the education and job opportunities that will ensure their independence and integration as effective members of society. They will be provided with all the facilities and tools required to put them on the path to commercial success.
Our goal is to attract and retain the finest Saudi and foreign minds, and provide them with all they need. Their presence in the Kingdom will contribute to economic development and attract additional foreign investment.
To this end, we will prepare a modern curriculum focused on rigorous standards in literacy, numeracy, skills and character development. We will track progress and publish a sophisticated range of education outcomes, showing year-on-year improvements. We will work closely with the private sector to ensure higher education outcomes are in line with the requirements of the job market. We will invest in strategic partnerships with apprenticeship providers, new skills councils from industry, and large private companies. We will also work towards developing the job specifications of every education field. Furthermore, we will build a centralized student database tracking students from early childhood through to K-12 and beyond into tertiary education (higher and vocational) in order to improve education planning, monitoring, evaluation, and outcomes.
Among our commitments: A bigger role for small and medium-sized enterprises
Among our goals by 2030: To lower the rate of unemployment from 11.6% to 7%. · To increase SME contribution to GDP from 20% to 35%. · To increase women’s participation in the workforce from 22% to 30%.
Diversifying our economy is vital for its sustainability. Although oil and gas are essential pillars of our economy, we have begun expanding our investments into additional sectors. We understand that there are complicated challenges ahead but we have long-term plans to overcome them. In the past 25 years, the Saudi economy has grown by an annual average rate of more than 4 percent, contributing to the creation of millions of new jobs. Although we are already among the 20 largest economies in the world, our ambitions are even greater. We aspire to have an even higher ranking by 2030, despite the headwinds of the global economic slowdown and the expected impact of our structural economic reforms. This requires us to invest in all our resources in order to diversify the economy, unleash the capabilities of our promising economic sectors and privatize some government services.
The Public Investment Fund will not compete with the private sector, but instead help unlock strategic sectors requiring intensive capital inputs. This will contribute towards developing entirely new economic sectors and establishing durable national corporations.
Building on the Kingdom’s leading position and historic alliances, we plan to enter long-term partnerships with neighboring and friendly countries for knowledge transfer and trade.
Our Vision is to maximize our investment capabilities by participating in large international companies and emerging technologies from around the world. This will ensure that we become market makers in selected sectors, as well as a leader in competitively managing assets, funding and investment. All of this will require the formation of an advanced financial and capital market open to the world, allowing greater funding opportunities and stimulating economic growth. To this end, we will continue facilitating access to investing and trading in the stock markets. We will smooth the process of listing private Saudi companies and state-owned enterprises, including Aramco. This will require deepening liquidity in our capital markets, fortifying the role of the debt market and paving the way for the derivatives market.
Among our commitments: Localize defense industries
Our aim is to localize over 50 percent of military equipment spending by 2030. We have already begun developing less complex industries such as those providing spare parts, armored vehicles and basic ammunition. We will expand this initiative to higher value and more complex equipment such as military aircraft. We will build an integrated national network of services and supporting industries that will improve our self-sufficiency and strengthen our defense exports, both regionally and internationally.
Among our commitments: A mining sector contributing to the national economy at full potential.
We are planning a number of structural reforms, which include stimulating private sector investments by intensifying exploration, building a comprehensive database of the Kingdom’s resources, reviewing the licensing procedures for extraction, investing in infrastructure, developing funding methods and establishing centers of excellence. We will also form strategic international partnerships and raise the competitiveness and productivity of our national companies. This will boost their contribution to the sector’s growth, as well as to the localization of knowledge and expertise.
Among our commitments: A renewable energy market
Among our goals by 2030: To move from our current position as the 19th largest economy in the world into the top 15.
To increase the localization of oil and gas sectors from 40% to 75% · To increase the Public Investment Fund’s assets, from SAR 600 billion to over 7 trillion.
We will strive to facilitate the movement of people and goods, and to simplify customs procedures at our ports.
As a result, we will create an environment attractive to both local and foreign investors, and earn their confidence in the resilience and potential of our national economy.
Over the past decade, the retail sector achieved an annual growth rate in excess of 10 percent. It currently employs 1.5 million workers, of which only 0.3 million are Saudis. Traditional retail also still dominates 50 percent of the market in the Kingdom compared to 20 percent in a number of countries in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), with our retail market suffering from limited penetration of modern trade and e-commerce. We aim to provide job opportunities for an additional million Saudis by 2020 in a growing retail sector that attracts modern, local, regional, and international brands across all regions of the country. We also aim to increase the contribution of modern trade and e-commerce to 80 percent of the retail sector by 2020. This will be achieved by attracting both regional and international retail investors and by easing restrictions on ownership and foreign investment.
To this end, we will facilitate local and regional flow of goods and develop necessary sectoral regulations. We will also increase financing of small retail enterprises to stimulate their growth and development.
Among our commitments: A developed digital infrastructure
We will partner with the private sector to develop the telecommunications and information technology infrastructure, especially high-speed broadband, expanding its coverage and capacity within and around cities and improving its quality. Our specific goal is to exceed 90 percent housing coverage in densely populated cities and 66 percent in other urban zones.
We will also develop building standards to facilitate the extension of broadband networks.
We will strengthen the governance of digital transformation through a national council. Additionally, we will improve our regulations and establish an effective partnership with telecom operators to better develop this critical infrastructure. We will also support local investments in the telecommunications and information technology sectors.
2.4 A thriving economy leveraging its unique position
2.4.1 Building a unique regional logistical hub
2.4.2 Integrating regionally and internationally
We will seek to effectively link with other countries in the region, through enhanced logistics services and new cross-border infrastructure projects, including land transport projects with Africa through Egypt. Logistical and trade exchanges will be streamlined, further cementing our pre-eminent position as a major trade hub.
2.4.3 Supporting our national companies