Distributed Renewables and the Shaping of the New Saudi Economy

Faris Al-Sulayman

Research Fellow

The first half of 2017 has seen Saudi Arabia take substantive steps in the renewable energy space, as the newly formed Ministry of Energy, Industry, and Mineral Resources aims to fulfill the goals set in Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program 2020, a broad blueprint for the Saudi economy, and the more detailed interim plan. Underlying these goals is the aim of transforming the Saudi economy from a centralized, oil-based economy to a model that is more diversified and reliant on private-sector growth. The creation of a new renewables sector in the kingdom offers an opportunity to pilot this new economic model, set an example for other nascent industries, and meet commitments to the Paris Climate Accords.