CAPE TOWN — Saudi Arabia’s mining sector reported record revenue of SR727 million in 2021, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported on Wednesday, citing Khalid Al-Mudaifer, vice minister of Industry for Mining Affairs, Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources.

The mining sector attracted over SR30 billion in investments and working to stimulate SR120 billion worth of additional investments in projects under study, he said in the “Mining Indaba 2022” conference held in South Africa.

The ministry received 930 exploration license applications in 2021, including 145 from 100 percent foreign companies.

The mining sector’s outstanding performance was driven by several privileges tailored for the potential investors, including higher local demand for metal products, the Kingdom’s geographical location near global economic markets, as well as the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Europe.

The vice minister noted that, under the Saudi Vision 2030, several perceptions and programs were prepared to develop the mining sector to become the third pillar of the Saudi industry, in addition to endorsing the comprehensive strategy for mining and mineral industries.

Al-Mudaifer said that the value of untapped minerals in the Arab Shield area alone is estimated at $1.3 trillion.

"The Kingdom is rich in various kinds of minerals, including those used in manufacturing essential technologies to build a sustainable future, noting that the national geological database that was launched recently provides access through the internet to almost 80 years of geological, geophysical and geochemical data, including thousands of detailed reports on the goals and aspects of mining."

He also reviewed qualitative opportunities that await investors and mining companies in the Kingdom that enjoys a vital fast-developing investment climate. 

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