RIYADH: Small and medium enterprises in Saudi Arabia are set to prosper thanks to 23 new initiatives launched by the SME General Authority, also known as Monsha’at.
The plans are linked to seven strategic goals embedded within programs affiliated with Vision 2030 — the economic diversification strategy which will see the Kingdom move away from its reliance on the oil trade, the Saudi Press Agency reported.
The initiatives put forward by Monsha’at will support goals including the development and sustainability of Saudi Arabia’s financial sector.
They will also target human capacity development as well as the growth of national industry and logistics services.
The goals were part of the National Transformation Program presented by Monsha’at, which also showed an increase in SMEs from 429,026 in 2016 to 1.14 million in 2022, reflecting a growth rate of 166 percent.
In addition to this, the authority also secured second place in the National Entrepreneurship Context Index in 2022, up from its ranking of 41 in 2018, according to the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report.
In the financial sector development program, Monsha’at contributed to establishing a national SME Bank and raising the share of lending to suitable firms from 5.4 percent in 2018 to 8.3 percent in 2022 — a growth rate of 54 percent.
During the same period, the authority launched a portal to link financiers from the government and private sectors with SMEs wishing to obtain funding. The value provided through the portal amounted to more than SR18 billion ($4.7 billion).
Other moves towards helping secure the goals related to Vision 2030 include Monsha’at establishing the Saudi Venture Capital Investment Co. with the aim of promoting the concept of bold and direct investment in emerging enterprises while stimulating the private sector to invest.
The authority also launched the Government Fee Refund initiative in 2018 which contributed to encouraging SMEs to enter the market, while supporting them to achieve growth during the first years of operation.
In the National Industry Development and Logistics Program, Monsha’at launched the Jadeer service to facilitate the access of SMEs to purchasing opportunities in the public and private sectors. The number of establishments qualified through the service has reached more than 2,300.
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