RIYADH- Saudi Arabia's state-run Public Investment Fund (PIF) has established the kingdom's first commercial helicopter operator with an initial capital of 565 million riyals ($151 million), state news agency SPA reported said on Monday.

The company will offer private air transport within the country's major cities, as well as tourist trips to other parts of the country, according to SPA's statement.

PIF is supporting government plans to diversify its economy, with investments in renewable energy, infrastructure and entertainment.

The fund, which has $360 billion in assets according to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, is also an investor in ride-hailing firm Uber Technologies and owns stakes in electric car makers Tesla and Lucid Motors.

($1 = 3.7502 riyals)

(Reporting by Stephen Kalin Writing by Nafisa Eltahir Editing by Edmund Blair) ((Nafisa.Eltahir@thomsonreuters.com;))