Saudi tries to tempt start-ups with entrepreneur licences

JeddahSaudi Arabia says it will issue licences for foreign entrepreneurs to set up businesses in a new city north of Jeddah. The King Abdullah Economic City, which is under construction by Dubai-listed Emaar Properties, is expected to be larger than Washington DC and to provide a million jobs. “Preference will be given to applicants holding patents, providing innovative services, representing a business activity new to Saudi Arabia, and who support one of the kingdom’s strategic sectors,” said a statement from Monsha'at, an authority for small and medium enterprises. Saudi Arabia is hoping to promote entrepreneurial activity to help diversify its economy away from petrochemicals – part of an ambitious development plan known as Vision 2030. Monsha'at said licensees would benefit from a range of supporting services including fee exemptions and discounts to stimulate growth in the new city. ©2017 funds global mena

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