HomeRegional Headquarters License

Saudi Arabia, experiencing rapid growth and emerging as the fastest-growing G20 nation, has positioned itself as a highly appealing market globally. Seizing the opportunity, the Royal Commission for Riyadh City (RCRC) and the Ministry of Investment (MISA) have introduced the Regional Headquarters (RHQ) program. The initiative is geared towards solidifying Saudi Arabia’s position as the premier hub for multinational corporations in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

Regional Headquarters License in KSA

As of January 1, 2024, the Saudi Arabian government will no longer collaborate with foreign companies that have their Regional Headquarters (RHQ) for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region outside Saudi Arabia. The designated MENA countries encompass all Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nations, along with Yemen, Iraq, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Mauritania, and Morocco. The RHQ serves as the primary administrative center overseeing the multinational corporation’s operations in the specified region.

Core RHQ Responsibilities:
Strategic Leadership Functions:
  • Formulation and Supervision of Regional Strategies
  • Coordination for Strategic Alignment
  • Integration of Products/Services in the Region
  • Support for Mergers, Acquisitions, and Divestments
  • Financial Performance Reviews
Management and Planning Functions:
  • Business Planning and Budgeting
  • Identification of New Market Opportunities
  • Monitoring Regional Market Trends, Competitors, and Operations
  • Coordination of Business Activities
  • Development of Regional Marketing Strategies
  • Operational and Financial Reporting
Supplementary RHQ Services:
  • Sales and Marketing Support
  • HR and Personnel Management
  • Sourcing Raw Materials and Components
  • Financial Oversight
  • Treasury and Foreign Exchange Services
  • Compliance and Internal Controls
  • Accounting, Legal, and Auditing Functions
  • Provision of Training Services
  • Research, Analysis, and Advisory Services
  • Operational Control and Logistics
  • Management of Supply Chain and International Trading
  • Technical or Engineering Support
  • IT Network Operations
  • Research and Development Initiatives
  • Management of Intellectual Property Rights
  • Oversight of Production Processes
Rules and Restrictions of RHQ License
  • Multinational groups must operate in two countries besides their headquarters and Saudi Arabia.
  • The RHQ in Saudi Arabia is established as a distinct legal entity, focusing solely on its operation.
  • The RHQ, holding the license, is limited to activities directly related to its operation, excluding revenue-generating endeavors.
  • Mandatory RHQ activities must start within six months of obtaining the license.
  • Within one year, the RHQ must initiate at least three optional activities.
  • Employees involved must have relevant skills, with at least three holding executive positions.
  • Within one year, the RHQ must have a minimum of 15 full-time employees, including senior executives.
  • The RHQ License can be cancelled for failure to start activities, non-compliance, or violating MISA regulations.
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