Saudi Arabia Plans to Build 'Riviera of the Middle East' in Ambitious New Project
Saudi Arabia has dazzled investors with plans for a series of "giga projects", funded in part by its sovereign wealth fund, but sceptics question their viability.
A Saudi money changer displays Saudi Riyal banknotes at a currency exchange shop in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia July 27, 2017. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser - RC1CA7D1DA40
Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) announced plans on Wednesday for a luxury tourism destination on its northwestern coast, the latest in a series of mega projects as the oil-reliant kingdom seeks to diversify. The project called "Amaala" would be "a natural extension of the Mediterranean Sea, and dubbed the Riviera of the Middle East", the country's top sovereign wealth fund said in a statement released by the information ministry.
The development will feature hotels, private villas, an arts academy and a yacht club, PIF added. It did not reveal any timeframe or the size of the investment, saying only that the "initial funding for the project will be provided by PIF".
Saudi Arabia has dazzled investors with plans for a series of "giga projects", funded in part by its sovereign wealth fund, but sceptics question their viability. The kingdom has already unveiled blueprints to build NEOM, a mega project billed as a regional Silicon Valley, in addition to the Red Sea project, a reef-fringed resort destination -- both worth hundreds of billions of dollars.
"Amaala will sit alongside NEOM and the Red Sea project as part of the giga-projects investment portfolio, helping to... (support) economic diversification," PIF said. Such projects are the brainchild of Prince Mohammed, architect of a sweeping reform programme dubbed "Vision 2030".
The reforms stem partly from a motivation to boost domestic spending and attract foreign investment as the kingdom reels from an economic slowdown. Kickstarting tourism is one of the centrepieces of Vision 2030. On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia said it will begin issuing visas to visitors to attend sporting and cultural events from December, a first for the kingdom as it seeks to lure international tourists.
Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox - subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what's happening in the world around you – in real time.
Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro and gain access to curated markets data, trading recommendations, equity analysis, investment ideas, insights from market gurus and much more. Get Moneycontrol PRO for 1 year at price of 3 months. Use code FREEDOM.
Recommended For You
- Sanjay Kapoor Trolls Malaika Arora on New 'Saturday Blues' Instagram Post
- Joe Jonas Celebrates James Bond Themed Birthday with Priyanka Chopra, Nick Jonas and Sophie
- Reebok CrossFit Nano 9.0 Review: Slickest Evolution of Versatile Fitness Shoes
- 'Superman': Tiger Shroff Deadlifts 200KG With an Ease, Impresses Ishaan Khatter and Fans
- PV Sindhu Chases Elusive Gold at BWF World Championships