Funds, centers, and organizations presented financial and advisory offerings to the entrepreneurs.
The "RAD 23" forum and exhibition provide a platform for expansion and open up new markets for entrepreneurship.
Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources: Modern technologies do not compete with Saudi employees.
Deputy Minister of Commerce: The growth of commercial registrations in the Eastern Province is 17%, and we are addressing challenges in the private sector by developing legislation and facilitating procedures.
Around 300 entrepreneurs from Saudi Arabia and the Arab Republic of Egypt showcased their innovations and ideas in various business and industrial fields at the Entrepreneurship Exhibition (RAD 23). The exhibition, organized by the Eastern Province Chamber, in its seventh edition, opened on Monday and will continue until Wednesday, November 15. The exhibition was inaugurated by the Prince of the Eastern Province at the Dhahran International Exhibition Center.
The Entrepreneurship Exhibition (RAD) aims to create a vibrant community where young entrepreneurs and innovators meet with major companies, business leaders, and supportive financial institutions. The exhibition, which includes the participation of various funds, centers, and entities, showcases youth projects and features business and industrial initiatives that have been able to continue developing ideas and adapting to market needs.
His Excellency, the Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources, Bandar bin Ibrahim Al-Khorayef, emphasized that investment opportunities in the industrial sector have undergone a radical change. He highlighted that Saudi Arabia is one of the most prepared countries to adopt modern manufacturing technologies due to the strong national will represented by the goals of Vision 2030. He also mentioned that there is no competition between technology and Saudi employees. Additionally, the significant youth population and their inclination towards using modern technologies contribute to accelerating the transformation of the industrial sector in the Kingdom.
During his participation in the "RAD" Entrepreneurship Forum in the Eastern Province, Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources, Bandar bin Ibrahim Al-Khorayef, explained that the national industrial strategy includes over 60 enabling initiatives, half of which are directed towards the entrepreneurship sector and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). He emphasized that efforts are underway to create spaces for entrepreneurs in industrial cities.
Al-Khorayef mentioned several initiatives launched by the industrial and mineral wealth system that have achieved success for entrepreneurs. These include the Industry Hackathon organized by the Saudi Industrial Development Fund and the "Alf Mile" initiative launched by the National Industry Development and Logistics Program "NIDLP."
He highlighted that accelerating exploration is a priority for the Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources in the mining sector, including both state-led and company-led accelerated exploration. Al-Khorayef considered accelerated exploration as the nerve center around which the mining sector revolves.
The Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources affirmed that the "Made in Saudi Arabia" program plays a crucial role in enhancing the identity of Saudi products, encouraging their purchase, and opening foreign markets for Saudi exporters. He noted that the program recently started leveraging sub-brands such as "Made in Makkah" and "Made in Madinah," as well as launching the sub-brand "Saudi Technology." He emphasized that the program is keen on selecting brands that meet the required standards of quality and efficiency.
Dr. Iman bint Habas Al-Mutairi, the Deputy Minister of Commerce and the General Supervisor of the Saudi Center for Economic and Business Affairs, revealed that commercial registrations in the Eastern Province have witnessed a growth of 17% during the year 2023 compared to the year 2018. She made this announcement during her participation in the opening session of the Entrepreneurship Exhibition 2023 (RAD) under the theme "Government Roles in Empowering Entrepreneurship."
Dr. Al-Mutairi, along with Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources Bandar bin Ibrahim Al-Khorayef and Badr bin Suleiman Al-Ruzaiza, the Chairman of the Asharqia Chamber, explained that the total commercial registrations in the Kingdom have exceeded 1.386 million, with more than 213,000 commercial registrations in the Eastern Province. She added that the number of registrations in the region in 2018 was 181,144 commercial registrations.
She highlighted the promising economic sectors that recorded growth in commercial registrations in the Eastern Province during the third quarter of the current year, including a 71% growth in the logistics services sector, a 70% growth in the maritime clubs sector, a 46% growth in artificial intelligence, a 44% growth in port docks and marine construction, and others.
Dr. Iman bint Habas Al-Mutairi also mentioned that e-commerce constitutes about 8% of the total trade in the Kingdom during 2022. It is expected to witness growth and prosperity, with total revenues reaching 49 billion riyals by 2025.
During the session, she discussed the reforms implemented in recent years to improve the business environment. These include the preparation and development of more than 70 legislations over the past seven years. Other procedural reforms include the development of controls for public opinion surveys on system and regulation projects before their approval. Additionally, more than 370 legislative projects were presented through the survey platform of the National Competitiveness Center. The government eliminated 485 conditions and requirements in 18 sectors to facilitate the investor's journey. More than 40 economic activities were introduced to develop investment opportunities in promising sectors.
Dr. Al-Mutairi highlighted the efforts of the Saudi Center for Economic and Business Affairs in facilitating the start and practice of business in the Kingdom. The center provides over 900 services offered by more than 60 government entities in its 17 local branches across 14 cities. The center's business platform has benefited over a million users in the current year.
She also touched upon the role of the National Program for Combating Commercial Concealment, aiming to promote compliance with market rules, create opportunities for Saudi youth in a fair competitive environment, and combat commercial concealment.
The meeting includes a distinguished participation from Egyptian companies, who came as honored guests in this edition of (RAD23). Its pioneers have managed to establish a foothold in their national economy, leaving a strong mark in their country's markets. We met with the innovators of the "Bayut" application, a cloud-based property management app that provides secure and easy solutions for managing properties, including tenant management, invoices, contracts, payments, as well as unit management and maintenance. Several innovators in various educational and industrial fields have made a significant impact on the Egyptian market, and they have plans to expand into other markets, with the Kingdom's market being a priority due to its large size and purchasing power. They praised the exhibition and its role in creating an economic community for exchanging opinions and experiences.