The Social Security Investment Fund (SSIF) and the Commercial Banks Company concluded at the headquarters of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Supplies an agreement to incorporate a new company to invest in infrastructure and mega development projects.

Minister of Industry, Trade and Supplies, Dr. Tareq Hammouri, said reaching this agreement is in the context of the government’s concern to enhance and incentivize partnership with the private sector, so that it would invest in all efforts to develop and jumpstart economy.

A series of meetings were held in the last four months with commercial banks, the SSIF and a number of Arab and foreign investment and sovereign funds, Hammouri said. The aim of these talks was to discuss a mechanism for cooperation and consider the best scenarios of the legal frame of the fund.

Hammouri expressed hope that the fund would invest in vital projects implemented within the context of public-private partnership principle. He further hoped that it would also work to attract Arab and foreign sovereign funds to have stake in the fund.

The project is extremely important as it invests national savings in strategic investments that would bring benefits to the Social Security Corporation and banks in light of the new investment directions of the agreement parties. It would also augment returns on the national economy, he said.

The government is a sponsor of, and not a shareholder in, this initiative, he said.

He praised the response of the SSIF and banks to this step that would certainly be beneficial to all parties.

On her part, SSIF CEO Kholoud Saqqaf said the government’s sponsorship of this initiative enhances trust in the investment environment of the kingdom, bringing the SSIF to a higher stage in investment where it starts to invest in more than bonds and returns on deposits.

ABJ chairman Hani Al Qadhi said banks’ response to the government’s initiative confirms their belief in the importance of investing in infrastructure and strategic projects to serve the national economy and increase the desired benefits.

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