Law allows wider investment in the Saudi healthcare market

 

The development of the healthcare sector is one of the top priorities in Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030.

The Saudi Council of Ministers has approved certain amendments to the Private Health Institutes Law (the Amendments). The plan is to significantly increase the amount of foreign investment in the Saudi healthcare market.

The Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) is the licensing authority that regulates all foreign investments in the Saudi market. Foreign investors were in the past only permitted to own, operate and manage hospitals in Saudi Arabia.

The amendments allow overseas private investors to own, operate and manage general healthcare centres, specialist healthcare centres, radiology centres, medical laboratories, outpatient surgeries and supporting medical services.

The authorities are actively trying to attract more international healthcare providers and investors.

Saudi Arabia plans to complete the sale of Saudi Medical Services facilities this year, as part of a privatisation programme, says the National Centre for Privatisation (NCP). The sales are key to the country’s efforts to wean the economy off oil, but so far have been slowed by delays. In the health sector, the NCP will also open public/private partnership tenders in radiology, laboratories, hospital commissioning and housing for health facilities staff.

For a more detailed analysis of the medical travel sector in Saudi Arabia, visit the IMTJ Country Profile.

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