Events > Higher Education Mission to Saudi Arabia

Higher Education Mission to Saudi Arabia

15th to 18th February 2020

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Mission overview

In March 2018, during the visit of HRH Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the United Kingdom confirmed its strong support for Vision 2030; the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s programme for economic diversity and social reform. It was agreed to establish a government-to-government partnership to support the comprehensive reform of the Saudi education system, using the expertise and capacity of the UK education sector. Sir Anthony Seldon was appointed as the Special Representative for Education to support Vision 2030.  

The education partnership has agreed a number of priority areas, including developing the research capacity of Saudi Universities and establishing more Higher Education partnerships leading to increased numbers of scholars studying in the UK and through transnational education.

Sir Anthony Seldon will lead this short education trade mission that will focus on UK-Saudi partnerships in higher education, including transnational education, student recruitment and joint research to match specific Saudi demand. The DIT Higher Education specialist will also be part of the mission. Recent changes allowing branch campuses to be established in Saudi Arabia have created new opportunities for Higher Education partnerships.


By joining this mission, participants will have the opportunity to: 

  • better understand the regulatory environment in Saudi Arabia and learn about priorities, opportunities and challenges to TNE partnerships; 
  • better understand the current scholarship eligibility requirements to support a greater diversity of eligible UK institutions;
  • better understand research priorities and aspirations for international cooperation;
  • meet with senior officials from the Ministry of Education;
  • participate in networking events; 
  • meet with Saudi universities; and,
  • work with local DIT and British Council staff on follow-up.

Proposed Itinerary

  • Sat 15 February – Travel to Riyadh.
  • Sun 16 February – Political, economic and education briefings by Embassy and British Council. Meeting /workshop with Ministry of Education and meetings with Saudi partners. Networking reception.  
  • Mon 17 February. Visit to Saudi University and follow up meetings with Saudi partners. 
  • Tue 18 February – Return to the UK.

The final programme will be confirmed in due course and is subject to amendment.

Application and costs  

The mission is aimed at International directors at UK universities who have interest in TNE, research collaboration and student recruitment. The mission is also suitable for UK student pathway providers and representative organisations. 

On request, we can provide further information on Saudi Arabia and the education opportunities to allow you to assess if this market is suitable for your university / organisation.

Applying to participate in this trade mission

If you are interested in being a part of this exciting education trade mission, please apply below by 3 January 2020. Spaces are limited and to ensure the best match with the opportunities available, applications will be reviewed, and organisations selected to take part. 

The education trade mission is free but participants are responsible for their airfare, accommodation, visas and insurance.  DIT will provide local group transport, venues and overall coordination. 

For more information please contact:

  • Aneesa Kazi, DIT Education, aneesa.kazi@trade.gov.uk;
  • Aisling Conboy, DIT Education HE specialist, aisling.conboy@trade.gov.uk, 020 7215 1624; or,
  • Mahmoud Mouselli, Director Programmes & Projects, British Council, Mahmoud.Mouselli@sa.britishcouncil.org.

We look forward to receiving your application and welcoming you to the mission. 

Application deadline:  5pm on Friday 3rd January 2020

apply now

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