The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s swift response to limit the impact of an economic
downturn set in motion by the global coronavirus pandemic; include an extensive
scheme of national measures targeted towards supporting the private industrial
and mining sectors. Under the mandate of a royal decree, the Ministry of
Industry and Mineral Resources launched 27 measures to address matters directly
affecting private industrial and mining enterprises and investors.
These measures include: deferring and restructuring loan payments, developing new products to support working capital , exempting, reducing or postponing payment of fees due to the ministry or its ecosystem, extending industrial licenses expiry period and time constrains for constructing and starting new plants, deferring previous claims of “reserved capacity” fees due, automatically renewing industrial licenses, renewing labor support documents, and renewing customs exemption and chemical clearance documents.
Moreover, certain initiatives were designed to support industrial investors, which include extending the period for completing the requirements of issuing and renewing licenses, cancelling service suspensions, suspending payments of financial consideration and fee, amending conditional allocation notices, extending investment agreements and deferring their cancelation procedures.
Additionally, other initiatives were focused on supporting mining investors in: deferring the implementation of mining licenses work programs, extending the period for completion of requirements for issuing and renewing licenses, extending the financial claim period for holders of small mines licenses, raw materials mines’ licenses, mining licenses for payment of financial dues, extending the period of export permits, extending the validity period of all valid mining licenses.
These newly launched measures provide different layers of support towards sustaining operations within the industrial and mining sectors. Such measures include offering a 30% discount on electricity bills and the settlement of only 50% of it, while offering the possibility of payment deferral. Additional measures focused on strengthening the concept of local content and national industry.
This is achieved through accelerating the incorporation of local content requirements within companies that have 51% ownership by Public Investment Fund (PIF), while taking into account the rules and regulations of tendering and sourcing works and procurements in favor of local content. Moreover, SAR 50 Billion has been allocated to facilitate the settlements of the private sector dues.
The Corporate Sustainability Program Support initiative and the Project Support Fund initiative have been put in place to facilitate accelerating and mitigating loan requirements and deferring its payment. These initiatives provide a loan scheme, allowing the private sector to obtain reduced interest rate loans and payment deferrals for the year 2020.
The hub of measures also targeted areas of concerns and provided support to the private sector in terms of; deferring the submission and payment of tax declarations, suspending imposition of fines and services stopping procedures, in addition to procedures for voluntary disclosure of any undisclosed tax obligations and exemption from fines resulting from that disclosure, for all taxpayers, extending expiry of resident IDs and deferring the payment of commercial records fees.
The Kingdom has dedicated massive efforts into its COVID-19 emergency response plan, which rival international standards.
Source: Saudi Press Agency