The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is seeking to establish mutually beneficial partnerships with Australian and other major mining sector stakeholders to aid the world in accessing the country’s $1.3 trillion-worth high-demand minerals. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia participated in Australia’s leading mining industry event, the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC).
Participating under the brand ‘Invest Saudi’, the Saudi delegation is led by Bandar Alkhorayef, Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources, and included Eng. Khaled Al-Mudaifer Vice-Minister for Mining Affairs and other senior officials from the Ministry of Investment, National Industrial Development and Logistics Program (NIDLP), Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF) and the Saudi Geological Survey (SGS).
Speaking at IMARC, which was hosted in Sydney, Australia between 2-4 November, Eng. Khalid Saleh Al-Mudaifer, Saudi Arabia Vice-Minister for Mining Affairs stated that a key objective of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 was the diversification of the Kingdom’s economy, spreading sustainable development to all regions of the Kingdom, and creating quality job opportunities for the Kingdom’s young generations. “Developing the Kingdom’s mining sector and the related industries and services, opening them for national and foreign investments, is a pivotal part of realizing KSA’s Vision 2030.”
The Vice-Minister pointed out that Saudi Arabia had become a world-class destination for mining investments owing to four key elements:
Collection and publication of geological data: Geological maps of Saudi Arabian mineral resources are now publicly available through the Regional Geological Survey Program. This data de-risks investment decisions by making the critical mineral resource information digitally available to investors about the estimated 1.3 trillion USD-worth high-demand minerals, such as gold, copper, zinc and rare earths. Thereby, allowing them to make more informed investment decisions.
Favourable Investment System: The country is offering lucrative incentives to prospective investors, and exploration and mining companies. This is supported by the Kingdom’s world-class infrastructure and logistics capabilities which are vital to all bulk commodity mining operations.
Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG): ESG principles are firmly embedded in the country’s new Mining Investment Law.
“We are building a mining system for the long term. A system that protects workers and the environment, and provides meaningful development to local communities while maintaining economic and business feasibility for both the Kingdom and the investors,” Eng. Khalid Saleh Al-Mudaifer said.Integrated Value Chains: Incentives of up to 90% discount on mining royalties are being offered to investors, who contribute to developing sustainability upstream, mid-stream and downstream in the country’s mining sector.
“We believe this is a win-win-win situation as it will help the Kingdom become a global mining leader, help investors generate profit, and will create local development and jobs.
We are open to new ideas and suggestions. This flexibility enables us to adopt industry-leading practices, once we know they are feasible and that they align with our core values,” stated Eng. Khalid Saleh Al-Mudaifer.
Investor interest and mining activities in Kingdom are gathering pace. This is illustrated by the fact that since January 2021, the Ministry of Mining has received more than 1200 applications for exploration licenses, with about 20% of those coming from foreign companies. It currently has 566 active exploration licenses and 176 active exploitation licenses. So far, three mining sites have been part of the Ministry’s competitive exploration bidding process. The first and second were awarded to international consortiums, and the Ministry has received expressions of interest for an additional location as well. Five new exploration sites are up for auction next year and details for an additional ten opportunities will be released in 2023. The Vice- Minister added that a further $32 billion worth of investments in the midstream sector are currently in the pipeline.
Eng. Khalid Saleh Al-Mudaifer noted that this was just the tip of the iceberg, and invited the attendees to the second edition of the Future Minerals Forum (FMF), which will take place between January 10-12, 2022 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, where they will hear much more about the massive opportunities that the Kingdom and its regional partners have to offer investors.
Last Modified Date: 03/11/2022 - 1:17 PM Saudi Arabia Time