Saudi Arabia to Grant Citizenship to “A Number of Distinguished People With Rare Expertise

Updated: Nov 13, 2021

In a landmark move, Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud approved granting citizenship of the Kingdom to "several distinguished individuals with rare expertise and specialisations," the state-run Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.


Saudi Arabia to Grant Citizenship to “A Number of Distinguished People With Rare Expertise

The approval comes "in light of the royal order to open the door for the naturalisation of legal, medical, scientific, cultural, sports and technical professionals who contribute to advancing the wheel of development and benefit the country in various fields," SPA reported.

The move is part of measures to implement Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030, which aims to make the Kingdom a significant business hub and diversify its economy by reducing its current dependence on oil.



Arab News, the largest-circulation English-language daily in Saudi Arabia, reports that the new approval includes citizenship for experts "in the fields of forensics and medicine, technology, agriculture, nuclear and renewable energy, oil and gas, and artificial intelligence, as well as for specialists in the arts, sports and culture."

However, the process of naturalisation will be restricted. "The granting of citizenship to a limited number of such individuals will be done by nomination based on public interest, and there will be no opportunity to submit applications," Saudi Gazette reported.


Saudi Arabia has stringent citizenship laws, with foreigners traditionally not granted citizenship. Existing regulations require non-Muslims to convert to Islam before being eligible for citizenship. The rules require applicants to have been permanent residents of Saudi Arabia for at least five years. These applicants must present a certificate from a Muslim religious authority documenting their religion.



Saudi Arabia is the second Gulf nation to liberalise citizenship procedures, after the United Arab Emirates. In January, the UAE offered citizenship to selected categories, including "investors, doctors, specialists, inventors, scientists, talents, intellectuals, artists and their families."


Like the Saudi system, the UAE does not allow applications for citizenship. Instead, professionals are nominated by members of the royal family or officials, with the cabinet giving final approval.



More Great Dubai Route Stories


Stay Ahead of the Curve Unlock the GCC's Leading Source of Business and Analysis


Dubairoute.com provides innovative marketing and advertising solutions to support an advertiser's specific campaign objectives. Customised programs leverage the best of Dubairoute.com. Contact our sales team today and see what our team can do for your custom advertising solutions. Please include a contact number if you are willing to speak to our sales team. You can also get in touch in the following ways:

Disclaimer
 

Global Business, Financial News, Market Data, and Analysis published here are delayed 24 hours. All the published information, analyses, and conclusions are based (unless sourced otherwise) on external information and Dubai Route Group's experts' judgment. They are intended as guides only and should not be construed as definitive forecasts or guarantees of future performance or results. No responsibility or liability is accepted by any person, including Dubai Route Group or its affiliates and their respective officers, employees, or agents, for any errors or omissions.

 

For all the latest lifestyle news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram, which is updated daily.