Professional Insight: Putting market transparency at the heart of Saudi’s long-term vision

By 2030, Saudi Arabia aspires to be recognised as an international powerhouse of business and investment, right at the heart of the Arab and Islamic worlds. A cornerstone of its approach will see investor confidence boosted through robust valuation standards and market transparency. We spoke to Sultan Aljorais who, as Secretary General of the Saudi valuation authority, is responsible for overseeing the emergence of a valuation profession in the country.

  1. Can you tell us a little about Taqeem, its role and history?

 The Saudi Authority for Accredited Valuers (Taqeem) is a non-profit valuation professional organisation established in 2013 by a royal decree, thus making Taqeem’s designation mandatory for any valuers in the Kingdom. Taqeem works as an independent governmental body working under the Ministry of Commerce and Investment.

TAQEEM aims to regulate and develop the valuation profession, accredit qualified valuers and apply the International Valuation Standards to increase the community trust and awareness in the valuation profession in Saudi Arabia.

2. Who are Taqeem’s primary stakeholders? Who do you work with?

Our primary stakeholders are valuers in all valuation sectors (Real estate, Business valuation, M&E valuation and personnel property).  We also work with government and private entities, such as Ministries, Banks, Capital Market Authority, and the Monetary Authority.

3. What is your role at Taqeem and how has your career brought you to this position?

I am a Secretary General of Taqeem. I have 22 years of experience in various organizations and mainly start-ups. I have been with Taqeem since the day it was established and worked with my team to set the foundation for standards, regulations and education programs.

4. How well developed is the valuation profession in Saudi and what factors have been driving its evolution in recent years?

Taqeem managed to regulate the valuation profession in Saudi Arabia with the help of its governmental authority. The Law of Accredited Valuers enforced valuers to undertake professional training in valuation which increased the quality of valuation services in KSA. This contributed to enhancing the overall transparency of the Saudi market and was aided by the introduction of the International Valuation Standards and the 2030 Vision.

5. Is Taqeem interested in areas of valuation beyond real estate? If so, which areas and why is this important?

Yes, Taqeem currently has 4 sectors of valuation; real estate, business, automobile damage assessment and machinery and equipment which will be introduced later this year. Our next area of interest is the precious metals and gemstones sector which constitutes a large portion of investments in Saudi Arabia and the region. Thus, we would like to enhance transparency in that sector by providing a solid groundwork that investors can trust.

6. The Saudi state is working towards a 2030 strategic vision. What is the aim of this plan and how do Taqeem’s efforts to professionalise the valuation industry relate to it?

2030 Vision aims for Saudi Arabia to be the heart of the Arab and Islamic worlds, the investment powerhouse, and the hub connecting three continents.

Gaining trust in the valuation profession will attract investors from all around the world contributing in one of the major pillars of the 2030 vision.

7. What will the valuation industry in Saudi look like in 2030? What will be different, do you think?

 The Saudi valuation market in 2030 will have a mature profession, internationally trusted valuations, improved transparency, clear outlook and better decision making supported by the International Valuation Standards.

8. IVS is seen as a strong foundation for the Saudi valuation profession but how did you arrive at this conclusion, did Saudi look at other systems also?

After establishing Taqeem, we looked for a unifying framework for the valuation profession. IVSC provided that with their creditable standards and extensive spread worldwide.

9. Who stands to benefit most through the emergence of strong and internationally recognised valuation standards in Saudi?

 The Saudi market in general, and by extension valuers, local and international investors, and entrepreneurs. The increased trust and transparency in valuation will nurture the culture of investment and create a stronger economy.

  Interview by Richard Stokes

Director of Communications, International Valuation Standards Council (IVSC)

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