According to a report on Tuesday early this week, it was made known that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will start issuing out Tourist Visa in the nearest future. This step taken by the ultra-conservative kingdom is to attract international visitors in a quest to diversify their oil-dependent economy.
Tourism like we all now is a major driver of a country’s growth, and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is making an attempt to wean itself off its dependence on petrodollars in the midst of a protracted oil slump.
“Saudi Arabia tourist visas will be introduced soon”. This was a statement made by Prince Sultan bin Salman bin Abdul Aziz. the head of the Saudi tourism authority. But he did not give a specific time frame this issuance of the Saudi tourist visa will kick-start.
Apart from the millions of pilgrims Muslims who travel to the Kingdom of Sausi Arabia for the hajj pilgrimage, most visitors normally face a tedious visa process coupled with the exorbitant fees attached to it.
Prince Sultan’s statement was made prior to Saudi Arabia’s first archaeology convention coming up in Riyadh next week, as the government plans to exhibit some of its historic sites.
The crowned Prince in August. declared a massive tourism project to turn 50 islands and a string of sites on the Red Sea into luxury resorts.
Though the Kingdom is endowed with natural beauty, it is hardly seen as a tourism hotspot.
I will be glad to inform you that alcohol, cinemas and theatres are still banned in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, it is one of the world’s most conservative countries.
But in recent months, the authorities projected a moderate image with a string of reforms, which includes decision to allow women to drive cars as from June 2018.
Saudi Arabia is also expected ti lift a public ban on cinemas, and have encouraged mixed gender celebrations. something you cannot see the past.
The issuance of tourist visas by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, is aimed at attracting badly needed foreign investment in the Kingdom.