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Saudi entertainment authority launches e-portal to facilitate event planners

RIYADH: The General Entertainment Authority (GEA) launched an online “License Portal” on Nov. 14 to facilitate event planners in obtaining official permissions in minimum possible time.
A four-minute instructional video is also available on the GEA’s website, The step-by-step video contains all information about the required documents to be uploaded through the web portal. It is currently available only in Arabic.
Event planners and organizers have reacted positively to the measure. However, they said they have to wait and watch how things work, as the service is yet to be tested.
“It’s still too early to tell,” said Anwar Idriss, a media consultant and entertainment director.
“If the portal is backed up with a well-organized support team that offers assistance on an equal opportunity basis, it will solve many of the issues we currently face.” He added: “The purpose is to help organizers’ workflow, not complicate it. There are many who would like to enter the business, and are in need of guidance.”
Before the establishment of the GEA, organizers had to face several bureaucratic complications in the issuance of permissions, as various agencies and authorities used to issue permits.
However, now event planners hope that the introduction of the new service will prove to be a “one-window” operation.
A GEA spokesperson told Arab News: “It’s too soon to comment on the results ...The portal was established for event planners in the Kingdom who organize events that go along with our vision. If an event planner doesn’t qualify… the application will be rejected until all the requirements are met.”
The authority also launched an electronic “ideas portal” for the 2018 calendar year for international and national organizations and entertainment firms. The aim is to diversify and develop the entertainment industry in the Kingdom to meet international standards.
The GEA has offered all organizers to submit their ideas through starting Nov.13. The ideas will be accepted until Dec. 14.

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