Saudi Arabia intends to make its foray into the semiconductor industry this year, in line with the kingdom’s economic diversification efforts, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday.

The kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund, the Public Investment Fund (PIF), is planning to make a “sizable investment” into the industry, the news agency quoted Saudi Minister of Communications and Information Technology Abdullah Alswaha as saying.

“They plan to make an announcement on a particular champion within the space to lead the Saudi efforts,” the official said.

The sovereign wealth fund is also looking to set up a national space company, which will make investments, including acquisitions, within the sector.

The fund is a key enabler of the Saudi Vision 2030.

In recent times, it has been investing in major industries and establishing new businesses to support the kingdom’s economic transformation strategy.

As of 2022, the fund’s assets under management stood at more than SAR2.2 trillion ($586 billion). It established 25 companies and created 181,000 jobs in 2022 alone, the fund said in a report.

(Writing by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)