The ministry pointed out that the total volume of investments in infrastructure projects and mining industrial complexes amounts to more than 216 billion riyals, which contributed to generating job opportunities and raising the local product, inferred by Ras Al Khair Industrial City projects that provided 12 thousand direct jobs, and contributed 35 billion riyals of the total The local product, as well as the Waad Al-Shamal projects that provided 30 thousand direct and indirect jobs, and raised the proportion of the gross domestic product by 24 billion riyals.
The ministry confirmed that Saudi Arabia currently produces many minerals and metal products, and it has an important role in value-added chains of metallic minerals, “iron, aluminum, copper, zinc, and gold”, as well as non-metallic minerals; “fertilizers, cement, glass, and ceramics”, as the share of production and industries are fertilizers, aluminum, and cement. The highest among metals, where self-sufficiency has been achieved, which may lead to export in some cases.
The ministry indicated that aluminum production is about 840 thousand tons to exceed domestic demand, while exports of phosphate fertilizers reach 5.8 million tons annually, usually, Saudi Arabia is among the 15 largest countries producing fertilizers, while cement is the eighth largest producer in the world with a production capacity that exceeds domestic demand, where Production of 61 million tons of cement and more than 350 million tons of "aggregate - concrete".
The ministry pointed out that Saudi Arabia has invested more than 150 billion riyals in "integrated mining value chains" in partnership with the private sector, while the mining sector contributes 64 billion riyals in the national gross domestic product, noting that the NIDLP program provides a wide range Of the investment opportunities in the mining sector for companies operating in the sector supported by a strong regulatory environment possible, competitive conditions, growing supply chains, and opportunities to access regional and international markets.
The ministry said, "It aspires to increase the sector's contribution to the gross domestic product by 176 billion riyals by 2030, in addition to raising the financial returns for the sector by 8.9 billion riyals and the creation of 219 thousand new jobs."
It explained that the mining sector is witnessing a fundamental transformation through the implementation of many initiatives, including modernizing the mining investment system and digitizing the services associated with it and facilitating its procedures to achieve the goals of the Saudi Vision 2030, noting that in order to achieve the mining strategy, efforts are integrated between the various relevant authorities by providing support and assistance to accomplish Initiatives.
The Ministry highlighted the achievements of the mining sector, in launching the Waad Al-Shamal City for Mining Industries and providing mining support from the Saudi Industrial Development Fund, and signing a memorandum of understanding to establish a copper and zinc smelter in Ras al-Khair, in addition to developing partnerships with the most important geological survey bodies in the leading countries in the mining field, The inauguration of the first phase of the "mining" platform, linking with "Yusr", as well as the launch of the first version of the National Geological Data Base.
It reported making amendments to the mining investment system to create an appropriate legal and regulatory environment to enhance the attractiveness of the sector, in addition to bridging the current gap in the mining investment system by "developing sector governance", "modifying types of licenses" and "modifying the financial system", which would contribute to achieving the desired goals of the overall strategy for the mining and mineral industries sector.
On the challenges facing the sector, the Ministry prepared it for the low level of exploration in the Kingdom, the abundance of geological information, and the lack of local developers, due to the weakness of the efficiency of licensing procedures, in addition to the services of investors in addition to weak supervision and limited social benefits from mineral resources, noting that the biggest challenge lies in the fact that Saudi Arabia is the fourth largest net importer of “net value between import and export” of mineral products such as iron, precious metals, and basic minerals, and also one of the largest consumers of barite, ceramics, and cement in the world, which makes it imperative for us to work to overcome the challenge and the development of the sector.
With regard to the "mining" platform, it mentioned that it is a unified platform for mining services, the first stage of which was launched and linked with "Yusr" in a step to facilitate the investor’s journey by reducing the number of procedures that go through and reducing the time taken for each procedure, and the time for renewing mining licenses has been reduced from 60 days to seven days, in addition to the possibility to reduce the time period for renewing licenses to one day after linking with banks.
The ministry estimated the total number of investors registered in the "mining" platform at 550 investors until the end of 2019, while the number of licenses renewed so far through the platform reached 54 licenses.