SCTH, Japanese university to explore Saudi heritage

Tourism in the Kingdom could be boosted by heritage-oriented adventure holidays.
Updated 13 May 2018
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SCTH, Japanese university to explore Saudi heritage

  • The exhibition was largely by Arab ambassadors, Japanese academics and archaeologists
  • Prince Sultan also toured the Kingdom’s pavilion at the National Museum of Japan

JEDDAH: The Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) and Japan’s Waseda University have agreed to carry out joint archaeological and exploration work at Al-Hawraa site in the Saudi province of Umluj.

The signing ceremony took place on the sidelines of the visit of SCTH President Prince Sultan bin Salman to Tokyo.

It is the latest in a series of cooperation programs between the Kingdom and Japan in the field of archaeology.

Under the terms of the agreement, a team from the university and a Saudi team will participate in the archaeological survey and exploration works on the site, as part of the joint Saudi international missions operating in the Kingdom under the supervision of SCTH.

In the same vein, the Kingdom also signed with Japan a joint scientific cooperation agreement in the field of archaeological research and studies by virtue of which the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) to perform three excavations to survey old Arabic patterns and Islamic writings in Najran and Madinah.

Prince Sultan also toured the Kingdom’s pavilion at the National Museum of Japan. He did so during his visit to an exhibition on Saudi heritage and culture organized by the SCTH and held by the Arab Islamic Institute in Tokyo. Prince Sultan was received by the institute’s director, Nasser bin Mohammed Al-Amaim.

The exhibition was largely by Arab ambassadors, Japanese academics and archaeologists. The prince praised Al-Amaim for the institute’s contribution to the events accompanying the exhibition, the pavilion and cultural seminars. 

The director thanked Prince Sultan for visiting the pavilion and for praising the institute’s work.

He explained that the Institute contributed to the establishment of the Saudi pavilion over a period of more than two months, along with the exhibition that was largely visited by Japanese visitors who have seen the pavilion’s activities, Arabic calligraphy paintings and a collection of national antiques related to Saudi folklore. 

Al-Amaim said that the Institute organized a symposium titled “The masterpieces of the effects of Saudi Arabia through the ages” attended by a number of Arab ambassadors, Japanese academics and a group of archaeologists.


Saudi Arabia’s up-and-coming energy park set to transform KSA into a global industrial powerhouse

Situated in the Kingdom’s Eastern Province, between Dammam and Al-Ahsa, the project will be developed in three phases. (Supplied)
Updated 12 December 2018
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Saudi Arabia’s up-and-coming energy park set to transform KSA into a global industrial powerhouse

  • The first phase is scheduled for completion by 2021
  • SPARK will localize more than 300 new industrial services and facilities and will have specialized training centers to cater to the huge influx of manpower

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia is fast catching up with the world’s ever-growing energy and technology scene ahead of 2030. In fact, the King Salman Energy Park (SPARK) may soon prove a global destination for energy industry investors.

The new energy city mega-project is being developed by Saudi Aramco, which received authoritization to embark on the initiative in the summer, and is operated, managed and maintained in partnership with the Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technology Zones (MODON). 

With projections that the megacity will create more than 100,000 jobs, it is considered one of the most up-and-coming energy parks in the world.

SPARK will localize more than 300 new industrial services and facilities and will have specialized training centers to cater to the huge influx of manpower.

Situated in the Kingdom’s Eastern Province, between Dammam and Al-Ahsa, the project will be developed in three phases. 

The first phase is scheduled for completion by 2021, while the final phase of the project is set for completion in 2035. With all this on track, the 50-square-kilometer project is poised to be a magnet for foreign and domestic investment. 

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman inaugurated the King Salman Energy Park at the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) on Monday. (SPA)

What’s more, Aramco’s espousal of SPARK will also help businesses indulge in technological development, manufacturing and exports channels and build a world-class energy supply chain. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman inaugurated the King Salman Energy Park at the King Abdulaziz Center for World Culture (Ithra) on Monday.

During the groundbreaking ceremony, Energy Minister and Aramco Chairman Khalid Al-Falih declared SPARK a special economic zone (SEZ) in which businesses can enjoy exclusive benefits. 

“We are looking forward to collaborating with our first anchor partners at SPARK,” said Saudi Aramco President and CEO, Amin Nasser.

SPARK has already attracted investment from foreign and local companies to produce and manufacture goods and services. The first phase of the project is expected to cost about $1.6 billion. 

The park is set to attract industrial investors in the water, power, petrochemical and wastewater sectors, among others. 

Facilities at SPARK will also help investors bridge gaps in local production back home, increasing competition in the long run. 

“This energy city is exciting because it brings together a multitude of businesses,” Mark McCollum, president and CEO of Weatherford Corp, told SPARK.

“We firmly believe that collaboration and cooperation among service companies and individual providers to the energy sector is vital in breaking new ground.”

The King Salman Energy Park is also set to promote small and medium-sized enterprises. With focus on energy production, it also provides opportunities for investment in residential and commercial real estate projects.

Nasser said that the “King Salman Energy Park will spur a new era of growth for one of the Kingdom’s already thriving sectors. What’s more, it will serve as a central gateway to the region’s economies since Aramco is at the heart of the global oil and gas industry.”