Yusuff Ali, one of the richest expats in the UAE, is the first Indian to be granted Saudi Arabia's coveted Premium Residency, widely known as the Saudi "green card."
Yusuff Ali is the chairman of the LuLu Group, a retail empire that owns and operates more than 35 hypermarkets and supermarks across Saudi Arabia.
The permit grants expatriates the right to live, work and own business and property in the Kingdom without need for a sponsor, the LULU group said in a statement.
This is a great honour not only for me but for the entire Indian expat community"
The introduction of the Premium Residency comes as a part of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 reform plan, which was announced by crown prince Mohammed bin Salman to boost the Saudi economy, the statement said.
Last year, 73 foreigners of various citizenships were granted Premium Residency by Saudi Arabia.
"This is a great honour not only for me but for the entire Indian expat community and I sincerely thank His Majesty the King Salman, His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the government of Saudi Arabia," said the 65-year-old tycoon.
Yusuff Ali, whose assets amount to over $4.7 billion, is expected to use his premium residency to further expand his business in the kingdom and invest in its economy.