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Saudi Arabia To Grant Citizenship to High-Skilled Foreign Professionals

Saudi Arabia has started granting citizenship to highly skilled professionals from around the world, a move made possible by a royal decree issued by His Highness King Salman as part of the Kingdom's Vision 2030 program. The aim is to nurture a working environment that is ideal for both Saudi Arabians and expats. In return, the hope is for top talents to be able to help develop the Kingdom and its economy, transforming Saudi Arabia into a regional powerhouse. Currently, the Kingdom is now one of several nations to grant citizenship to foreign professionals.

The landmark decree by His Highness King Salman will allow professionals specializing in specific fields to be eligible for citizenship. This will benefit expatriates with skills in the agriculture, artificial intelligence (AI), aviation, cultural, information and communication technology (ICT), legal, medical, oil and gas, science, space, and sport sectors.

Prior to the new ruling on the Kingdom's citizenship law, Saudi Arabia implemented the Premier Residency system, which proved to be quite successful in luring top talents and foreign investors. In fact, the Kingdom had expressed a desire to lure some of the best scientists, innovators, and cultural professionals from all around the world, with the approval of the "Privileged Iqama" residency scheme in May 2019.

Currently, the Kingdom has granted citizenship to a number of professionals residing within Saudi Arabia. These talented individuals include Dr. Abdul Karim Al-Sammak, an author and historian known for translating many of the Kingdom's statesmen during the nation's founding, Dr. Muhammad Al-Beqai, a fellow historian, researcher and translator, Dr. Amin Seido, an academic and historical researcher, Mukhtar Alim, chief calligrapher of the kiswa of the Kaaba, and Samaan Al-Ani, a professional in theater art. 

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