H.R.H. Prince Faisal Bin Turki Bin Abdulaziz AI-Saud

Advisor at the Royal Court, Saudi Arabia (2018 – Present)

Former Advisor to the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Saudi Arabia (1987-2018), now Ministry of Energy |Former Vice Chairman of Saudi Arabia’s National Industrial Clusters Development Program (2007-2018)

“My primary goal is to be an exemplary and leading nation in all aspects, and I will work with you in achieving this endeavor.”

King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques

H.R.H. Prince Faisal Bin Turki Bin Abdulaziz AI-Saud was born in 1965 in Saudi Arabia. He obtained a BSc. in Industrial Management and an MBA from King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM) in Dhahran. He also received professional training at Chase Manhattan Bank in New York, which merged with J.P. Morgan & Co. in 2000. Throughout his career as an Advisor to the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Prince Faisal – with the full support of the kingdom’s leadership – managed to achieve what few people have ever done.

Among Prince Faisal’s chief contributions are the instrumental role he played in the economic diversification of Saudi Arabia, the development of the petrochemical industry through strategic gas allocation, stimulating the establishment of research and innovation centers and ensuring that robust training is provided to young Saudis, enabling them to become an instrumental part of today’s national workforce.

A unique personality, with resolute character, Prince Faisal pursued his goals with unwavering belief and firm determination in maximizing the socio-econmic benefits of the depleting natural resources in the Kingdom. A strong proponent of economic diversification, and unmatched advocate of the development of local talent, he is an epitome of a good leader and a pioneer of his time. For these reasons and more GPCA is bestowing him with the GPCA Legacy Award “Al Rowad”, The Honor of a Lifetime.

Laying the foundation for a new ear in Saudi Arabia’s industrialization drive

Prince Faisal legacy is associated with his relentless efforts to stimulate the socio-economic development of the country, by fueling the creation of high value-added industrial sectors and the training of Saudi Arabia’s national workforce. Entrusted with the important task to maximize the value obtained from each unit of gas allocated was H.R.H. Prince Faisal bin Turki in his role as Advisor to the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources. In his role he was instrumental in allocating the favorably priced gas feedstock which would be used in the petrochemical and power generation industries at a time when the country was investing significantly in increasing its production capacity and building new production facilities and plants.

It was Prince Faisal himself who introduced the concept of linking gas allocation to the socio-economic impact created by the proposed project. In so doing, he had a direct impact on diversifying the industry’s products portfolio and expanding on performance and specialty chemicals. Throughout his career, he contributed tremendously to the Saudi Arabian chemical industry’s R&D and innovation capabilities. He drove heavyweight industry players like SABIC, Sipchem, TASNEE, S-Chem and Petro Rabigh to build clusters for Research and Product Application Centers in Saudi Arabia. He further encouraged them to establish specialized and industry relevant vocational institutes among which are the Plastic Fabrication Institute in Riyadh by SABIC and the Synthetic Rubber Institute in Yanbu, which was built under a partnership between SABIC and ExxonMobil. An array of projects and highly profitable joint ventures were born out of this initiative. They include PetroRabig, the Saudi Techno Park, Sadara Value Parks, and many more.

Prince Faisal also supported the kingdom’s expansion strategy further downstream. He would allocate large quantities of gas feedstock at a lower rate to companies in the kingdom under the condition that they would increase and advance their contribution to the Saudi economy and clearly demonstrate how the project would create more jobs. At a time when the petrochemical industry in the kingdom was at a burgeoning stage of its development, this stimulated the creation of new sectors in Saudi Arabia’s downstream industry and enabled the employment of tens of thousands of young Saudis. All of these achievements and more can be credited to Prince Faisal, whose vision and strong resolve were nothing short of extraordinary.

National Industrial Clusters Development Program

Another key milestone in His Highness’ legacy was the creation of the National Industrial Clusters Development Program (NICDP), currently known as the National Industrial Development Center[1]. Established in 2008[2] as a government agency to lead the development of some of the fastest growing, export-oriented industrial sectors[3] in Saudi Arabia, NICDP is considered as the brainchild of Prince Faisal who served as its Vice Chairman for a number of years. Prince Faisal’s vision was to develop industrial clusters in the Kingdom by attracting specialized investment and positioning the development of high-tech industries at the center of transformation of Saudi Arabia’s industrial sector. The program is also closely aligned with diversifying the local economy and meeting the objectives of Saudi Vision 2030.

Economic cities: Ras Al Khair

As part of his role as Advisor to the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources (MinPet), Prince Faisal was instrumental in providing all enablers for developing the Mining City of  the Ras Al Khair on the east coast of Saudi Arabia, including the financing by PIF of the 1,600 km Mining Railway at a cost of $6.8 bn. . His efforts are bearing fruit years after plans to build Jazan Economic city were established and will continue to add value to the local economy, stimulate the creation of new industries and create local jobs in the years to come. Today Jazan is a $30 billion Economic City, a flagship development regionally, that encompasses a world scale refinery, 2.4GW syngas power station, a portfolio of heavy and medium industry and a permanent residential area for over 150,000 people[4]. Ras Al-Khair is a sprawling complex located on Saudi Arabia’s northeastern coast, which includes a port, a power plant for desalinating water and producing electricity, in addition to a railway line linking the complex to bauxite and phosphate mines. In 2019, the Saudi Press Agency reported that industrial development plans in Ras Al-Khair Industrial City have contributed to attracting investments amounting to $26.67 billion[5].

Saudi mining strategy

Prince Faisal was instrumental in formulating the Saudi Mining Strategy which expanded the role of Ma’aden into the chemical industry, more specifically, into phosphate fertilizers. He served as Vice Chairman of the Board of Ma’aden (also known as Saudi Arabian Mining Company). Ma’aden was founded in 1997 by a Royal Decree with a mandate to develop Saudi Arabia’s minerals sector as the third pillar of Saudi industry, besides oil and petrochemicals. Today Ma’aden is among the fastest-growing mining companies in the world and the largest multi-commodity mining and metals company in the Middle East. It is ranked among the top 10 global mining companies based on market capitalization.

A life of great resolve

After serving in this role for more than two decades, the Vice Chairman of the National Industrial Clusters Development Program moved one to become an Advisor to the Saudi Royal Court with the rank of Minister. He has occupied this role since February 2018.

Prince Faisal’s time as an Advisor to the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources was shaped by tremendous challenges. The road ahead of him was difficult and long. And yet he overcame every challenge with indestructible determination. Among the business circles at his time, he was known as a tough negotiator who had his country’s best interests at heart. Maximizing job creation, creating opportunities for local capabilities building and economic prosperity from the kingdom’s natural resources were the driving force behind his strategy and vision. Achieving these goals, he knew was essential to the economic success of Saudi Arabia and translating the riches reaped from oil and gas extraction into socio-economic benefits for its residents and people. As Saudi Arabia is at a pivotal stage of its journey towards transformation, when its leadership pursues with ever more vigor the realization of its 2030 Vision, there has never been a better time to celebrate the lifetime achievements of Prince Faisal and bestow him with the GPCA Legacy Award “Al Rowad”.

[1] Argaam, Saudi Cabinet approves NICDP rebranding, August 2020, Link last accessed 9/11/2021

[2] https://uk.linkedin.com/company/national-industrial-development-program?trk=ppro_cprof

[3] These include automotive, aerospace, chemicals, minerals and metals, renewable energy and more.

[4] Saudi Environmental Market Remains Strong Amid Low Oil Price, WKC Group, May 2017, Link last accessed 9/11/2021

[5] Arab News, Ras Al-Khair attracts investments worth more than $26bn, Link last accessed 9/11/2021

A Saudi power facility under construction (Aramco)
Young Saudi Trainees
TASNEE SEPC Cracker - Jubail
TASNEE petrochemical complex
TASNEE corporate office
SABIC Plastics Application Development Center (SPADC)
SABIC Plastics Application Development Center (SPADC) inauguration 2013 (Credit Arab News)
Jubail, Saudi Arabia, 1920s
Ethane storage tank is part of the Master Gas System (Aramco)
Young Saudi Trainees
Flared gas in Saudi Arabia's oil fields
Early Saudi oil well (Aramco)
Electric power lines now criss cross Saudi Arabia (Aramco)