RIYADH, September 9, 2017 – Vision 2030 builds on early successes, and is strengthening its delivery mechanisms as it increases the scope and pace of implementation.
Vision 2030, the national vision that is transforming the Saudi nation and economy, is far reaching in scope, scale and targets. It has always been known and planned that fulfilment of Vision 2030 requires, over time, flexibility and agility by the government and the teams leading implementation of the program plans. It is important to adjust and adapt to unexpected situations, and to use new circumstances in ways that reinforce and strengthen underlying strategic objectives. Such flexibility should not undermine the stability and predictability needed to allow the private sector to plan its new investments and expansions.
Adjustment and improvement are continuous processes. This, we believe, is best practice and widely adopted by governments and leading organisations around the world.
There have been many early successes for the program, including a faster than anticipated reduction in the budget deficit, energy price reform and the introduction of excise tax. Significant improvements also have been made in spending efficiencies and the allocation of SAR 200 billion of support to strategic private sector organisations, including through (i) the Saudi Industrial Development Fund which has been allocated SR 15 billion of additional capital to fund private sector industrial projects, (ii) SR 75 billion earmarked for the Saudi China proposed fund, with 50% coming from the Saudi government with a focus on strategic infrastructure and logistical projects.
Additionally billions of Saudi Riyals are earmarked for water and sewage infrastructure projects this year and over the next couple of years; on top of this significant increases are budgeted to support Small and Medium enterprises. At the same time, we have witnessed greater transparency with the introduction of quarterly budget reports, and more timely payment on government contracts, which are a testament to further progress.
A spokesman for the Ministry of Culture & Information stated:
“It should not therefore be a surprise to participants and observers of Vision 2030 that the Government is now planning to further strengthen and build on the ways it delivers the vision targets. Indeed, over the coming years there will be further periodic adjustments and improvements to the vision’s implementation programs.”
The Spokesman added:
“At its launch in May 2016, Vision 2030 was underpinned by two major executive (operational programs): the National Transformation Program (NTP 1.0) and the Fiscal Balance Program (FBP). In May 2017, the Council of Economic and Development Affairs (CEDA) developed and announced the Vision 2030 strategic fulfilment framework by simplifying, aligning and provide clearer ministerial responsibilities, and including an additional 10 Vision Realization Programs (VRPs) in addition to NTP and FBP.”
At the same time, CEDA has started to develop the revised version of NTP 1.0, namely NTP 2.0. A significant focus of NTP 2.0 will be to improve efficiency and effectiveness of delivery across institutions. With more than half of the strategic objectives under NTP 1.0 now assigned to the other VRPs, NTP 2.0 will focus on 36 strategic objectives by allocating them to various NTP’s portfolios. NTP 2.0 aims to allow the assigned leading ministries of the 10 portfolios to develop capacity to achieve its goals, bridge gaps, share lessons learned, and work in sync with other government and non-government entities.
For example, the Ministry of Health will lead the health portfolio, and it will have the decision-making power to adjust existing initiatives, add new ones and collaborate with other stakeholders under CEDA oversight. Since May, specialized committees reporting to CEDA have been working on developing portfolios and plans for the new Vision Realization Programs.
Vision 2030 will always have a group of VRPs until 2030. Some of the current VRPs will be last until 2020, after which new Vision Realization Programs may be launched.
The government privatisation program continues to gain traction and the plan for an initial public offering (IPO) of a stake in Saudi Aramco remains on track. The IPO process is well underway and Saudi Aramco remains focused on ensuring that all IPO-related requirements are completed on time and to the very highest standards.
This represents learning and progress, and provides a stronger foundation for the necessary reforms and progress for the country.
The evaluations and improvements provide the foundation for the necessary reforms. The government is confident that this will contribute positively to the implementation and delivery of Vision 2030.
The Kingdom is determined, and confident to reach its objectives and to ensure economic stability and prosperity for its people.