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Saudi Arabia launches $34.6 bn Quality of Life Program 2020

Saudi Arabia’s Council of Economic and Development Affairs has launched the Quality of Life Program 2020, with a total expenditure of $34.6 billion (130 billion riyals), reported Al-Arabiya news website.

The Quality of Life Program is one of the Vision Realization Programs 2030 which was approved by the Council of Ministers.

The Program comes as a continuance to the operational programs that were launched to support the achievement of the Vision 2030, as well as to strengthen the cornerstones in the Kingdom.

The implementation plan of the Quality of Life Program 2020 reflects the vision of the government of King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to prepare the required environment to improve individuals and families’ lifestyle.

The vision also aims to promote new options that enhance participation in cultural, entertainment, sports and other appropriate activities that contribute to the quality of life, job creation, as well as, to encourage investment opportunities, and diversifying economic activities, while enhancing the status of Saudi cities in the ranking of the best cities in the world.

The launch of the Quality of Life Program 2020 follows the efforts of Mohammed bin Salman, Crown Prince and Chairman of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs, to achieve the objectives of the Kingdom’s vision 2030. The Crown Prince is keen to make the Kingdom's economy more prosperous and the Saudi society more vibrant.

Total expenditures in the sectors related to the quality of life program 2020 up to 2020 reaches to 130 billion riyals (34.6 billion dollars), of which 74.5 billion riyals (19.8 billion dollars) total direct investments in the program. 

The government capital expenditure is more than 50 billion riyals (13.3 billion riyals) until 2020, and investments available to the private sector around 23.7 billion (6.3 billion dollar) for the same period through 220 initiatives adopted by the program up to 2020.

This does not include all forms of capital expenditure in major projects Such as Al Qadiya Project, the Red Sea Project, Al-Dariyah Gate Project, Historical Jeddah Project, Royal Commission for Al-Ola and other projects, in addition to all related projects of the private sector, with total investments exceeding SR 86 billion (23 billion dollar).

The 2020 Quality of Life Program aims to achieve non-oil Gross Domestic Production growth in the related sectors by 20% per year until 2020, and the contribution of local content in the relevant sectors by 67% until 2020.

The program indicators within macroeconomic measures up to 2020 includes creating more than 346,000 jobs and generated non-oil revenues of SR 1.9 billion (0.5 billion dollar). 

The overarching goal of the Quality of Life Program 2020 is to include at least three Saudi cities in the list of the top 100 cities in the world to live in by 2030. While the overall aspiration refers to three cities in the kingdom, this Program pursues to the improvement of the lifestyle of citizens and residents throughout Saudi Arabia in general, through the development of different lifestyles, improvement of infrastructure, and the expansion of various sectors concern the wellbeing of citizens. 

Quality of Life 2020 aspires to provide economic and investment opportunities for sustainable growth and development. Creative industries have proved to be key drivers of economic growth around the world. There are many opportunities for these sectors to thrive in the Kingdom; number of funding models will be developed in order to stimulate the private sector to invest, in both capital expenditures and operating expenses.

The program encourages the private sector and foreign investors to invest in many vital markets related to improving the quality of life. The main objective of the Program is to increase the involvement of the private sector in the development of the strategy by improving participation in vital areas that require high capital expenditures, and the return on investment is initially low, encouraging private sector investment in the future.

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