Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Tourism Ahmed Al-Khateeb said that the kingdom aims to attract 150 million visitors by 2030 and that tourism sector will contribute SR750 billion ($200 billion) to the national economy, a report said.
The minister said this while addressing the Real Estate Future Forum in Riyadh on January 22, Saudi Gazette said.
“We have the vision and plans to provide infrastructure and services and everything that tourists are looking for. Saudi Arabia will become one of the most important countries in the world in the tourism and travel sector after the completion of infrastructure projects,” he said.
Last year, the sector’s contribution increased to 4.5% of GDP, and 7% of non-oil GDP.
“We created many jobs in the tourism sector, indicating that the state’s expansion in establishing major projects was with the aim of developing the tourism sector and attracting investments to it, and competing for the 1.7 billion tourists in the world looking for all things available in Saudi Arabia,” Al-Khateeb said.
The minister stressed that the quality of upcoming projects in the tourism sector related to hospitality facilities is very high, whether in hotels or resorts.
“We have signed multiple agreements to enter major five-star hotels, and the finest hospitality facilities will be available in Saudi Arabia. After the issuance of the new tourism regulations, we began implementing monitoring and inspection campaigns to ensure compliance, and we closed more than 250 hotels last year,” he said.
Al-Khateeb said Saudi Arabia is keen on raising the level of quality of services provided in this sector. “We also conducted a comprehensive review of the tourism market in Saudi Arabia, and began promoting tourist destinations at the international level with the aim of competing globally in the field of tourism,” he added.