Diplomatic Missions and Global Organizations Allowed Ownership of Headquarters and Residences

Saudi Arabia has amended the Law on Real Estate Ownership and Investment by non-Saudis, and foreign diplomatic missions in the Kingdom

Riyadh — Saudi Arabia has amended the Law on Real Estate Ownership and Investment by non-Saudis, and foreign diplomatic missions in the Kingdom. The foreign diplomatic missions can own their official headquarters and residences based on reciprocity.

A provision in the amended Law permits international and regional organizations to own their official headquarters. The permission will be within the limits of the agreements governing them.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs specified in the amended law ownerships would be granted on the condition of obtaining a license.

On its Twitter account, the Investment Ministry asked for opinions from the public and suggestions on the amended Law.

This new Law replaces the existing Real Estate Ownership and Investment law for non-Saudis. The amended Real estate law will come into force 90 days after the prime minister’s order’s publication in the Official Gazette.

The amendments to the Law aim to improve the procedures and controls related to the ownership or use of real estate by non-Saudis.

The amended law targets non-Saudis, residents or non-residents. It also includes Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) citizens.

The amended Law clearly stipulates that it is not permissible, by any means other than inheritance; to achieve the right to own, easement, or use over real estate; located within the boundary of the Two Holy Mosques for a person prohibited from entering these premises.

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The Law confirms the article correctly grants the right of ownership and the right of usufruct on real estate within the borders of the Kingdom; including Makkah and Madinah, as the current Law stipulates the prohibition of this right.

Implementing the new law provisions does not prejudice the acquisition of the right of ownership; or any other original right over real estate through inheritance and the regulations; and decisions of the royal orders and Council of Ministers that prevent ownership in some locations.

In May 2021, Saudi Arabia allowed non-Saudis to invest in listed companies and own real estate in Makkah and Madinah.

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The Cabinet approved exempting all Saudi-listed companies from the prohibition stated in Article No. 5. The Law on non-Saudis owning Real Estate and Investment.

The Capital Market Authority confirmed all Saudi-listed companies could invest in real estate located in Makkah and Madinah. Foreigners can also invest in investment funds that own real estate within Makkah and Madinah.

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