Saudi Arabia awarded 84 mining licenses to investors in June within a landmark law introduced in 2021 to attract capital to the Gulf Kingdom’s lucrative metals industry, according to official data. 

The permits in June comprised 51 mining exploration in various areas while the rest covered building material industries and exploitation of raw materials, the Industry and Mineral Resources Ministry said in a report carried by Aliqtisadia newspaper. 

The June permits brought the total number of mining licenses granted by the Ministry to nearly 2,100, including around 510 minerals exploration, the report showed. 

Saudi Arabia, which controls the world’s second largest proven oil deposits, began enforcing a new mining investment law last year with the aim of attracting private local and foreign capital in the industry as part of an economic diversification plan. 

Officials have estimated the Kingdom’s minerals wealth at more than 5 trillion Saudi riyals ($1.33 trillion).

(Writing by Nadim Kawach; Editing by Anoop Menon)