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The Saudi Arabia General Investment Authority (SAGIA) is an agency established in 2000 to improve the business environment and encourage foreign investment in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This agency was created out of the Kingdom's landmark Foreign Investment Law of 2000 with the mandate to diversify the economy and provide jobs for its burgeoning young population. The fledgling agency was expected to enlist the aid of other government ministries and agencies in reducing barriers to investment-including the politically sensitive "Saudization" policy, which gave employment preference to Saudis over foreign workers-and in marketing Saudi Arabia as a welcoming location for foreign investors. However, the law that had formed SAGIA, gave it few tools to work with. Therefore, it had to find a way to cooperate with the rest of the government to effect change. SAGIA's first governor, Prince Abdullah, retired in 2004, and it would be the task of his successor, Amr Al Dabbagh, to advance SAGIA's mission. It remains to be seen whether Al Dabbagh, a successful businessman, could overcome the challenges that had thus far stymied the young agency.
The case should be used for class discussions of several important themes: the difficulty of collaboration across government bureaucracy with little authority or resources; effecting change in an unfavorable political climate - both external and internal; human capital development with the skill for strategic planning and communications; and the impact of an individual dynamic leader on an organization.
|Curriculum Area:||Markets, Business, & Government|
Management, Leadership, & Decision Sciences
|Policy Area:||Communication, Public Opinion, and the Press|
Environment and Natural Resources