BlackRock Inc. plans to set up a new investment platform in Saudi Arabia, backed by up to $5 billion from Saudi sovereign wealth fund the Public Investment Fund (PIF).

The world's biggest asset manager signed an MoU with the wealth fund to set up BlackRock Riyadh Investment Management (BRIM), which will invest across a range of asset classes, including private and public markets.

The investment will be managed by a Riyadh-based portfolio management team and supported by BlackRock’s global asset management platform, a joint statement from the entities said.

The non-binding MoU is subject to satisfying certain necessary conditions, regulatory approvals and fulfilling specified milestones

“The continued growth of the kingdom’s capital markets and diversification of its financial sector will contribute to future prosperity for its citizens,” BlackRock Chief Executive Officer Larry Fink said in the statement.

“Saudi Arabia has become an increasingly attractive destination for international investment as Vision 2030 comes to life,” he added.

PIF's deputy governor Yazeed A. Al-Humied said the agreement would help make the Saudi investment market more internationally diverse and more dynamic.

PIF, with over $900 billion in assets, is the main engine driving Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman's Saudi Vision 2030 program, which aims to diversify the oil-dependent economy.

BlackRock has around $10 trillion of assets under management across the globe and is keen to make its presence felt in the biggest market in the GCC.

(Reporting by Brinda Darasha; editing by Seban Scaria)