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    Qiddiya’s big plans to identify and develop future Saudi motorsport talent

    DUBAI: To the outsider, Qiddiya looks little more than an expanse of desert terrain. Look closer, and you will see several isolated buildings, and closer still, several construction projects breaking ground. In about three years, this will be a buzzing, expanding city — a city that will at the end of 2023 open its doors to five zones that will revolutionize the tourism, entertainment and sports industries in the Kingdom. There is Enjoy, home to the “Parks and Attractions” theme; Aspire, where “Sports and Wellness” will promote healthier living; Appreciate, covering the “Arts and Culture” sectors; Nurture, showcasing “Nature and Environment,” […] More

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    Saudi Arabia’s Diriyah project ‘on time and on track’

    DUBAI: Saudi doctors and volunteers are expected to play a key role in a newly launched initiative to allow health professionals in Yemen, Bangladesh, Sudan, Nigeria and Pakistan to intervene quickly to save people’s vision. The initiative, the result of a partnership between the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSrelief) and Al-Basar International Foundation, envisages 41 medical campaigns, during which an estimated 205,000 examinations will be conducted, 16,400 operations will be carried out, and 41,000 medical glasses will be distributed. The 262,400 individuals expected to benefit from this initiative are among the estimated 2.2 billion people worldwide affected […] More

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    Egypt to begin implementation of Sinai spiritual shrine project

    Could citizenship for talented foreigners and investors be the GCC’s game changer? DUBAI: Foreign migrant workers make up nearly 90 percent of the population in the UAE’s seven emirates, making it one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse countries in the world. But expatriates have never been given the chance to apply for, or shown a pathway to, citizenship. Now, legal reforms adopted by the UAE leadership that overturn this longstanding practice are being hailed as a potentially transformative development for the country’s future. Given the similarities in the policy-development processes of the Arab Gulf countries, some experts wonder […] More

  • Seeing through Iran’s moderate vs hard-liner illusion
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    Seeing through Iran’s moderate vs hard-liner illusion

    Seeing through Iran’s moderate vs hard-liner illusion US President Joe Biden. (Getty Images) I believe the two most used phrases by Iran lobbyists in Washington and Europe are “this will strengthen the hard-liners” and “this will weaken the moderates.” Every single time a tough decision against the regime is made, they go off like synchronized alarm systems, repeating “this action is going to weaken the moderates and strengthen the hard-liners.”As US President Joe Biden’s administration has now taken office, these lobbyists are pushing for a speedy return to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear deal and have announced […] More

  • Arab-European axis of friendship takes shape in Athens
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    Arab-European axis of friendship takes shape in Athens

    ATHENS: Respecting international law and national sovereignty, and pursuing peaceful resolutions to disputes, are the recipe for regional security and stability, the foreign ministers of Greece, Cyprus, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the UAE and France said on Thursday at the Philia Forum in Athens. “Our countries are connected by close relations, which come from the past and meet in everything we believe today, in international law and in the law of the sea, in peace, in good neighborly relations, as well as in stability,” said Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis. “It is for this reason that our initiative is open […] More

  • Red Sea Project set to secure new financing, launch off-plan sales: CEO
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    Red Sea Project set to secure new financing, launch off-plan sales: CEO

    JEDDAH: Wednesday’s launch of the dolphin-shaped Coral Bloom luxury island project is just one part of the rapid development taking place along Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea coast, with the main developer behind the project close to finalizing $3.7 billion in investment from local banks, and off-plan sales set to begin in the second quarter of this year. In an exclusive interview with Arab News, John Pagano, CEO of The Red Sea Development Co. (TRSDC), confirmed that off-plan sales of real estate units will begin in the second quarter, but will be at a limited capacity of around 300-400 units. The […] More

  • INTERVIEW: DGDA CEO Jerry Inzerillo on Diriyah’s Formula E
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    INTERVIEW: DGDA CEO Jerry Inzerillo on Diriyah’s Formula E

    DUBAI: After a year of disruptions and delays across global sporing competitions, Formula E returns to Saudi Arabia for the third time with the Diriyah E-Prix double-header on February 26 and 27. The nighttime races will kick off the 2021 Formula E season, and Jerry Inzerillo, CEO, Diriyah Gate Development Authority, say the UNESCO-protected area is ready to welcome back the action. Q. You’ve spoken before about Diriyah being a place of ‘gathering’. Why is that so important to you personally and to this historic location? A. Diriyah is the birthplace of the First Saudi State, the Jewel of the Kingdom. […] More

  • Coral Bloom: Showing world the way for eco-tourism
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    Coral Bloom: Showing world the way for eco-tourism

    Coral Bloom: Showing world the way for eco-tourism The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has destroyed hundreds of millions of jobs globally and in the realm of travel and tourism at least 180 million people have been made redundant. This matters to many countries, such as Austria where 15 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) is earned from tourism, and even more so in developing nations such as Thailand and the Maldives, where so many are employed in the tourism and hospitality sector. It also matters to Saudi Arabia, where, under the Vision 2030 reform plan, travel and tourism is […] More

  • Europe’s summer abroad canceled as staycation bookings soar
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    Europe’s summer abroad canceled as staycation bookings soar

    CONNEMARA, Ireland: Up until late January Terry O’Toole was fielding a trickle of enquiries from Irish holidaymakers happy to settle for another summer at home in one of the cottages he manages in the scenic west coast region of Connemara.But when a government minister said on radio that it was very unlikely Irish people will be able to go on foreign holidays this summer, “the trickle became a torrent.”From Connemara cottages to Berlin houseboats, Sweden’s ski slopes to UK activity parks, holiday accommodation is being snapped up by cautious domestic tourists already resigned to another staycation summer, amid fears of […] More

  • Spain’s FM praises Saudi reforms, says they make Kingdom healthier
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    Spain’s FM praises Saudi reforms, says they make Kingdom healthier

    JEDDAH: With sunlight lasting approximately nine hours a day in Saudi Arabia, properties in the Kingdom have been given the green light to install solar panels as an alternative form of electricity generation. The Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs and Housing announced this week that it began to implement the safety requirements necessary to install solar energy cells in residential buildings and facilities. Participating entities in this project include the Ministry of Energy; the Electricity and Co-Generation Regulatory Authority; the Ministry of Commerce and Investment; the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy; and the Saudi Standards, Metrology and […] More

  • Cheap renewable energy a divisive issue in South Africa
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    Cheap renewable energy a divisive issue in South Africa

    Cheap renewable energy a divisive issue in South Africa Mulugeta Desalegn serves a customer in his convenience store during a power outage, in Senaone, Soweto, South Africa, March 18, 2019. (Reuters) South Africa’s national government has struggled badly with the coronavirus pandemic. This has prompted provincial leaders to enact their own plans. The pandemic has thus widened divisions at the heart of the nation, with these chasms raising fresh concerns about the country fracturing. However, these fears are directed at the wrong possible cause of national disintegration. For all its ineptitude, a central government remains necessary to coordinate pandemic response. […] More

  • Buying staple foods now means making hard choices
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    Buying staple foods now means making hard choices

    JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia this month will introduce a new inter-bank money transfer system, which will allow payments to be processed faster between local banks, helping to foster growth in the Kingdom’s rapidly developing e-commerce industry. The system will allow money to be transferred between local banks 24 hours a day and at more advantageous rates. According to Talat Zaki Hafiz, an economist and board member of the Saudi Financial Association, instant electronic payments are defined by the Euro Retail Payments Board as electronic retail payment solutions that are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a […] More

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