Logo of Ash-Sharqiyah Development Co.

Ash-Sharqiyah Development Co. announced receiving today, Aug. 2, a decision from the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture’s Director General in the Eastern Province, stating that the company will not be able to issue an ownership deed on the land of the government grant that it was previously provided based on Supreme Order No. 1016, issued earlier to own 72.18 million square meters (sqm) of total land.

In a statement to Tadawul, the company said the reason for this is due to Saudi Aramco’s desire to use this land or parts of it. This is in addition to the Royal Decree No. 40008, which prevents the legal authority from issuing an ownership deed to Ash-Sharqiyah Development under the concession agreement signed between the government and Saudi Aramco.

The resolution also stipulates the company’s eligibility to make use of the aforementioned land until the actual need of Saudi Aramco is fulfilled. The concerned authorities must follow the statutory procedures to issue the ownership deed for Ash-Sharqiyah Development until Saudi Aramco’s need for this land comes to an end.

Ash-Sharqiyah Development has been following up with all the departments concerned with issuing the deed since the issuance of the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture’s decision on Jan. 1, 2020, which was approved by the Royal Decree that stipulates the company’s eligibility to own an area of 72.178 million sqm of the total land area of the government grant delivered to the company under Supreme Order No. 1016.

The company also clarified that it will obtain Saudi Aramco’s approval to exploit parts of the grant land to implement its strategic projects and that the company, represented by its board of directors and its executive management, will continue to follow up on the matter until obtaining guarantees that ensure its rights based on the supreme directive.

Earlier today, Tadawul announced trading suspension on Ash-Sharqiyah Development’s shares until the end of the trading session, upon the company’s request.

In February 2019, the Saudi Cabinet decided to grant agricultural companies the ownership of the reclaimed land plots, provided that those companies should deliver the remaining parts, Argaam earlier reported.

In 2020, Ash-Sharqiyah Development received a decision from the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture, which stipulated the former’s ownership of 72.2 million square meters of the total land area of the grant provided to the company.