RIYADH — The Chinese technology giant Huawei will establish its flagship store in Riyadh, the largest such store outside China, the Ministry of Investment has announced.
Saudi Arabia’s Kaden Investment Company and Huawei have signed an agreement in this regard in a ceremony held at the ministry’s headquarters here on Friday.
Opening of the flagship store will allow Huawei, one of the largest global telecommunications companies, to have direct access to consumers amid rising demand for digital products and services in the Kingdom.
“This step comes within the framework of enhancing qualitative investments in the communications and information technology sector in Saudi Arabia,” the ministry said in a statement on its Twitter account.
“The agreement with Huawei comes as a result of the facilities provided by the Ministry of Investment, and in continuous cooperation with the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology.
“The agreement is the culmination of a long-standing relationship with Huawei since 2002, as it was one of the first companies that benefited from the attractive market opportunities for communications and information technology in the country,” the statement said.
Saudi Arabia expects Internet usage in the Kingdom to increase from covering 82.6 percent of the population in 2022 from 73.2 percent in 2017, the ministry statement said.
For his part, Minister of Investment Eng. Khaled Al-Falih tweeted that the signing of an agreement between Huawei and the Kaden Investment Company to open the largest Huawei flagship store outside China in Riyadh is an important step in Huawei’s investment journey in the Kingdom.
“The agreement is a fruit of the continuous cooperation between the Ministry of Investment and the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, aimed at attracting, empowering and supporting investments in the communications and information technology sector,” he added.
It is noteworthy that Saudi Arabia has created an independent ministry for investment in February last year after separating the investment portfolio from the Ministry of Commerce and abolishing Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA).
This was part of a step that confirms the seriousness of Saudi Arabia’s move towards building a diversified economy and expanding the base of productive economy, and ensuring participation of the private sector in development and attracting more investments that constitute an added value to the Saudi economy.
It is noteworthy that last year the Saudi Authority for Data and Artificial Intelligence and Huawei signed a memorandum of understanding to recognize Arabic language and character using AI technology and with the help of researchers from the Kingdom and Huawei.
Some telecommunication companies in the Gulf countries, including Zain’s Saudi unit Zain KSA, have signed deals to use 5G technology from Huawei.