Chinese top among tourists to enter KSA this month

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The Kingdom is hoping to increase the number of foreign visitors, as well as encourage domestic tourism and create jobs for young Saudis. (SPA)
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The Kingdom is hoping to increase the number of foreign visitors, as well as encourage domestic tourism and create jobs for young Saudis. (SPA)
Updated 10 October 2019

Chinese top among tourists to enter KSA this month

  • Saudi Arabia has issued 7,391 tourist visas to Chinese nationals since September 28
  • Kingdom will receive 100 million visitors annually by 2030, Saudi Authority

ISLAMABAD: Chinese nationals have topped the number of foreign visitors to enter Saudi Arabia since September this year, according to the Saudi Foreign Ministry.
The ministry revealed the number of visitors from the top 10 countries using the new system — with China topping the list with 7,391 tourists, the UK, and the US on second and third slots with 6159 and 2132 visa applicants respectively.
France and Germany were also on the list, with Canada, Malaysia, and Russia just behind the top three. Australia and Kazakhstan were in ninth and tenth place, the ministry revealed. 
The Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) announced the launch of e-tourist visa welcoming visitors from all over the world on September 28, which coincided with the World Tourism Day. 
The one-year multiple-entry visas allow tourists to spend up to 90 days in the country.
Ahmad bin Aqil Al-Khatib, chairman of the SCTH board of directors said on the occasion that the Kingdom was opening its doors to the world. “We are hospitable people who welcome and honor their visitors, who will witness the importance of hospitality, beauty of nature and cultural depth in the Kingdom.”
Saudi Arabia is not only welcoming visitors but also investors, Al-Khatib said.
“I am glad to announce attracting 115 billion riyals so far, which indicates the world’s trust in the Saudi market’s strength and its potential,” he added.
According to the SCTH, there are over 10,000 historical sites in Saudi Arabia while the sites registered under UNESCO’s World Heritage list represent only part of the kingdom’s rich cultural heritage and marvelous destinations for world viewing.
Under the Saudi national tourism strategy, the kingdom will receive 100 million visitors annually by 2030 while currently, it receives 41 million, the SCTH said.
 


KSRelief chief: Saudi Arabia is biggest donor to Yemen

Updated 30 May 2020

KSRelief chief: Saudi Arabia is biggest donor to Yemen

  • Al-Rabeeah said he hoped the donors conference would be supported by the international community
  • $180 million is needed urgently to fight COVID-19 in Yemen

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia is the largest donor to humanitarian efforts in Yemen and its response to a donor conference held in 2015 is evidence of this, the head of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) said on Saturday.
The supervisor general of KSRelief, Abdullah Al-Rabeeah, said that meeting the humanitarian needs of the Yemeni people is a priority for the Kingdom.
He added that he hoped the upcoming donors conference organized by the Kingdom in partnership with the United Nations would be supported and well received by the international community.
Meanwhile, the UN under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and emergency relief coordinator Mark Lowcock said the Kingdom donated more than $750 million last year and pledged $500 million in April.
Lowcock added that this makes Saudi Arabia the biggest donor to Yemen, which requires $2.4 billion to fund the aid operation for the rest of the year. Of that figure, $180 million is needed urgently to fight COVID-19.
Yemen’s Minister of Information Moammar Al-Eryani said that the Kingdom has always provided support to Yemen and continues to do so at a time when Iran is “providing nothing but killing, destruction, smuggled weapons, ballistic missiles … and explosive devices that kill Yemenis every day.”
The donors conference for Yemen is due to take place on Tuesday at 4 p.m. Saudi time.