The Minister of Commerce, Chairman of the Supervisory Committee of the National Anti-Concealment Program, Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi, expressed his gratitude to Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, for the Cabinet’s decision to extend the grace period offered to the violators of the anti-concealment law for an additional six months, starting from August 23, 2021, until February 16, 2022.
Al-Qasabi said, "The Cabinet’s extension approval reflects the state's keenness to provide an opportunity to those in violation of the relevant regulations to rectify their status and encourage them to apply for correction requests to benefit from the offered incentives."
The minister revealed that several large and medium-sized enterprises, whose annual revenues exceeded more than SR6 billion, benefited from the corrective period in its first phase’s two options; “allowing the entry of a non-Saudi partner into a business, or registering the ownership of a facility in the name of a non-Saudi”, adding that the ministry has been examining corrections requisitions of establishments in various activities and sectors from all parties (Saudis and non-Saudis) since the beginning of the grace period which started 6 months ago.
According to the National Anti-Concealment Program data, the correction requests received by the Ministry of Commerce included various economic activities, most notably: wholesale and retail trade, contracting, accommodation and food services, manufacturing industries, transport, and storage, as well as other service activities.
The applicants’ requests received included the six correction options specified in the ministry’s regulations, which include “ allowing the entry of a non-Saudi partner into a business, registering the ownership of a facility in the name of a non-Saudi, practicing business activity by introducing a new partner in the facility. Other options also included that “a Saudi violator can sell or waive a facility, a non-Saudi violator can obtain the privileged iqama. A final option in the corrective period lets a non-Saudi leave the Kingdom permanently.
The program renewed its call on all those wishing to correct their status, to take advantage of this opportunity to apply to the Ministry of Commerce with a request for correction before the end of the corrective period’s February 16, 2022 deadline, to ensure the sustainability of their business activity and to avoid the stipulated penalties.
The ministry warned that strict mechanisms will be in place via utilizing means of artificial intelligence after the end of the corrective period in analyzing and controlling the data of violating facilities and inflicting severe penalties on them up to 5 years imprisonment or fines amounting to SR5 million, or both.
Those wishing to benefit from the grace period and correct the status of their businesses can apply electronically through the ministry's website (mc.gov.sa), to benefit from the advantages of the corrective period and exception from the penalties stipulated in the law.