They’ll be hitting the road from June.Dubai-based ride-sharing app Careem has opened up applications for women in Saudi Arabia, and 1,000 have already put their names forward.
Speaking to Thomson Reuters site Zawya, co-founder Magnus Olsson said Careem was looking to expand significantly in the country.
The Saudi government has ruled that any new drivers for apps like Careem must be nationals. Existing expat drivers are allowed to continue, Zawya reports.
These changes come as part of Vision 2030, Saudi Arabia’s ambitious post-oil economy plan which hopes to increase participation of women in the workforce and diversify the country’s industries.
“There is still so much room for growth in the Saudi market. Small parts of the population in Saudi are using services such as Careem, and, as economic activity increases, there will be more need to move around, whether for jobs or other private activities,” Olsson told the site.
In September, it was announced that the ban on women behind the wheel would end in June this year.
The initiative, spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, aims to make Saudi a more modern, tourist-friendly destination.
The crown prince is also behind an initiative to turn 200 kilometres of the country’s Red Sea coast into a series of luxury retreats.