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Diplomatic World_nummer 56.

• Refocusing on small

• Refocusing on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by encouraging financial assistance. Increasing the contribution of SMEs to GDP from 20 to 35 percent by 2030. To make the country less dependent on its oil reserves and secure a thriving economy, Saudi Arabia will diversify to create more dynamic job opportunities for its citizens. This will happen through commitments to entrepreneurship, innovation and education. Concretely we are striving to lower the rate of unemployment from 11.6% to 7%; increase SME contribution to GDP from 20% to 35%, and increase women’s participation in the workforce from 22% to 30%. By privatising state-owned assets such as Saudi Aramco and also refocusing on small and medium-sized enterprises through enhanced financial assistance, the kingdom will unlock underdeveloped industries such as manufacturing, renewable energy and tourism and make our economy more robust. Furthermore, by modernising the curriculum and standards of Saudi educational institutions, the aim is to propel at least five Saudi universities into the top 200 in the world, delivering a well-equipped workforce. Beyond these reforms, achieving our desired rate of economic growth will require an environment that attracts the necessary skills and capabilities from beyond our national borders. To attract and retain the finest foreign minds, the government plans to improve living and working conditions for non-Saudis by extending their ability to own property in certain areas, improving the quality of life, permitting the establishment of more private schools and adopting an effective and simple system for issuing visas and residence permits. Opening up the kingdom in this way will contribute to economic development and attract foreign investors who can be confident in the resilience and potential of our national economy. By easing restrictions on ownership and foreign investment and creating a smoother flow of goods, people and capital, we aim to increase foreign direct investment from 3.8% to the international level of 5.7% of GDP. This is of course a great opportunity 12 Kaaba in Masjid Al Haram in Mecca Saudi Arabia © Shutterstock

Makkah Clock Tower © Shutterstock for European entrepreneurs eager to benefit from Saudi Arabia’s potential as a strategic location that links Europe to Asia and Africa. In order to be an ambitious nation, Saudi Arabia will focus on accountability, transparency and effectiveness in its governing strategy. Sustainable success can only be achieved with solid foundations. In order to realize this potential, the Kingdom will: • Boost transparency by expanding online services and improving governance standards. In order to sharpen the ambition of our nation, Saudi Arabia will focus on accountability, transparency and effectiveness in its governing strategy. We shall have zero tolerance for all levels of corruption, whether administrative or financial. We will adopt leading international standards and administrative practices, helping us reach the highest levels of transparency and governance in all sectors. We will set and uphold high standards of accountability. Our goals, plans and performance indicators will be published so that progress and delivery can be publicly monitored. Transparency will be boosted and delays reduced by expanding online services and improving their governance standards, with the aim of becoming a global leader in e-government. • Establish the King Salman Program for Human Capital Development in order to train more than 500.000 government employees in best practices. We have yet to identify and put into effect the best practices that would ensure that public sector employees have the right skills for the future. However, by 2020, we aim to have trained, through distance learning, 500.000 government employees. All ministries and government institutions will be required to adopt best practices in human capital development. We will continue to hire individuals according to merit and work towards building a broad talent base, so they may become leaders of the future. The King Salman Program for Human Capital 13