David Mooney

Countries in the Gulf region will need to look to In-Country Value (ICV) programmes to maximise economic and human capital development in a post-oil future, says Efficio, a global leader in ICV, procurement, and supply chain management.
GCC countries are set for a crucial 12 months in progressing their (ICV) programmes as the public and private sectors join together in increasing diversification away from oil and gas, Efficio says. 
In-Country Value (ICV) programmes were initially created to increase workplace nationalisation – ensuring that investment was channelled into the development of a country’s own talent pool and resources. 
Total value programmes
Over time, they have evolved into total value programmes that encompass a wide range of factors to improve economic efficiency and diversity, while also being key engines to driving social development. 
Today, comprehensive programmes encompass strategic initiatives, such as developing local supplier capabilities, establishing strategic supply chain partnerships with international OEMs, attracting local and foreign investments, together with developing a future proof-workforce through training and internship programmes. 
Over the past 10 to 15 years, the GCC has been instrumental in highlighting the advantages offered by ICV and how the need to increase efficiency and local value creation in their post-oil economic future will be crucial in the near, medium, and longer terms.
This is why now is a pivotal time for GCC countries when it comes to progressing their In-Country Value (ICV) programmes.
Efficio has worked for more than a decade to help establish ICV-related policies and holistic ICV development programmes in the region. 
ICV as a tool
The challenge now is how to leverage ICV as a tool from which to become global leaders in rapidly evolving industries – from green energy to IT. 
Efficio VP and Mena regional lead, David Mooney, said: “Governments in the GCC have historically been global leaders in understanding the value of ICV.
“We have worked side by side with public sector leaders in KSA and the UAE to establish successful ICV programmes, which are then, in turn, enabled by the private sector.” 
Without question, ICV programmes have been successful in creating opportunities for new businesses and careers for nationals. The next phase is to evolve ICV policies that are a benchmark globally. The countries that achieve this will position their business owners to become industry leaders in the emerging markets predicted to shape this decade and beyond, future proofing their economies by balancing nationalisation and commercial competitiveness, he said. 
“In the coming year, ICV policy will be a key focus for all leaders within the GCC – they understand that they have the ability and ambition to enable the future economies required to create real diversification.”
Saudi Arabia Vision 2030 plan 
Saudi Arabia is recognised as having leveraged ICV to grow and diversify the economy, while balancing the creation of job opportunities for nationals and encouraging the arrival of foreign talent and investment.
Efficio has been at the centre of that strategy since 2015, where it led a foundational ICV development programme at the heart of government. This work has continued to 2023, initially through the design and implementation of holistic ICV development programmes at “national champions” across several industries – such as Petrochemicals, Mining, and Telecommunications – followed by developing and launching national ICV development programmes in partnership with key Ministries in the energy, ICT, and other industrial sectors. The way these national companions have approached ICV can function as a blueprint for other leaders in the Gulf. 
Adam Forgacs, Efficio Director and the Head of Efficio’s dedicated ICV Centre of Excellence, said: “ICV is a critical engine to driving extended value at both national and corporate levels. 
ICV leader
Saudi Arabia has long been a leader in ICV in the region. Powered by the Vision 2030 programme, Efficio has been working with a wide set of Ministries, government-owned enterprises, investment funds, and other private sector organisations to first develop the national ICV regulation and enablers, and then to establish and implement end-to-end ICV development programmes that incorporate strategic market and workforce development initiatives. 
“What we have seen in Saudi Arabia is a balanced approach to ICV development that considers the maturity of the local market to avoid impacting emerging industries negatively. For example, in Petrochemicals, which represents a mature component of KSA’s economy with established local supply chains and strong engineering skills across the workforce, taking a more aggressive approach to localisation was appropriate. 
“In contrast, our investor attraction, supplier development, and workforce development programmes in the ICT sector are more focused on localising knowledge and new technologies, attracting foreign investment and building the skills of the national workforce over time. 
“Through this approach, we can drive significant ICV impact quickly, but sustainably – ensuring that we expand localisation in traditional industries while we also future proof the workforce skills and set Saudi Arabia up to be an innovator and leader in emerging technologies. 
“We have developed a strong ICV blueprint that can be used by other countries and companies in the region – each country and company will have different objectives and targets, and through our deep experience in developing tailored national and company level ICV development programmes we can drive significant value at all levels.”-- TradeArabia News Service