Riyadh skyline, Saudi Arabia.
Image Credit: Pixabay

Riyadh: Saudi King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz had issued a decree granting Saudi nationality to brilliant foreign professionals in a step aimed at attracting bright minds from around the world as the kingdom seeks to diversify its economy, Saudi news portal Sabq reported Thursday.

According to the royal decree issued nearly two months ago, the Saudi nationality will be granted to distinguished professionals in different disciplines including Islamic scholars as well as experts in nuclear and renewable energy, medicine, pharmacology, computer science, oil, artificial intelligence, robotics, ecology, astronautics, aviation, culture, sports and arts, the paper added.

“It also covers domains needed by Saudi Arabia due to its geographical nature such as distinguished scientists in the desalination technology and helping in attaining objectives of expediting development,” it added.

The naturalization step is aimed at drawing distinguished and creative people from around the world to come to live and work in Saudi Arabia, the report said.

The step conforms to Saudi Vision 2030, an ambitious scheme launched in 2016 with the aim of diversifying the oil-dependent Saudi economy and promoting national development "to the benefit of the country and citizens".

There was no immediate official comment on the report. It is not clear yet if the reported naturalization also comprises non-Muslim professionals.