Saudi Arabia ranks 8th in the world in attracting direct foreign investment

July 22, 2010

In 2009 Saudi Arabia was the eighth largest recipient of direct foreign investment in the world, according to a newly released report from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The amount of foreign capital flowing into the Kingdom was estimated at SR 133 billion [$35.46 billion], said the World Investment Report, bringing the total amount of foreign investment in the country to SR 552 [$147.18 billion]. Last year, the Kingdom placed fourteenth on the list, which covers 192 countries.

The UNCTAD report noted that the largest amount of foreign investment in the Kingdom came from the United States ($5.8 billion), followed by Kuwait ($4.3 billion), the UAE ($3.8 billion), France ($2.6 billion) and Japan ($2 billion).

During a press conference in Riyadh today, UNCTAD representative Taffere Tescfachew said that despite the international financial crisis in 2009, the Kingdom continued to attract direct foreign investments, especially relative to other countries. “Being the largest FDI recipient in the region, Saudi Arabia has projected impressive growth last year and it has earned investor confidence from global entrepreneurs,” Tescfachew said.