Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, on Monday broke ground on the King Salman Energy Park (SPARK), located in the Eastern Province.
SPARK is a 50-square-kilometer energy city megaproject which will position Saudi Arabia as a global energy, industrial and technology hub. The first phase of the development will be completed by 2021.
SPARK has already attracted investments from foreign and local companies to produce and manufacture goods and services in the Kingdom’s energy sector. The investment in the first phase of the project is expected to be around $1.6 billion.
Saudi Aramco is at the heart of SPARK’s development, helping to bring businesses together to drive efficiencies and promote technological development, manufacturing and exports, as well as build a world-class energy supply chain. SPARK’s role in enabling localization within the Kingdom’s energy supply chain aligns with the strategic goals of Saudi Aramco’s In-Kingdom Total Value Add (IKTVA) program.
During the groundbreaking ceremony, Khalid A. Al-Falih, Minister of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources and Saudi Aramco chairman, announced that SPARK will be a Special Economic Zone, where tenants will benefit from regulatory, fiscal and non-fiscal support. SPARK’s status supports the energy city’s objective to attract investments and improve its competitiveness for the regional and global export of energy products and services.
Saudi Aramco President and CEO Amin H. Nasser said: “The King Salman Energy Park will start a new era of growth for one of the Kingdom’s thriving sectors. It will serve as a central gateway to the region’s economies with Saudi Aramco continuing to be at the heart of the global oil and gas industry.”