What does the Saudi local market for cinemas look like?

Saudis arrive to watch Saudi short movies during the "Short Film Competition 2" festival, in this October 20, 2017 photo, at King Fahad Culture Center in Riyadh. (AFP)
Updated 13 December 2017
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What does the Saudi local market for cinemas look like?

JEDDAH: Shockingly, as many as 35,000 Saudis travel daily to neighboring Bahrain where they spend an average of SR1,200 ($320) per day on watching movies.
In a study conducted by cinemas in Bahrain back in 2011, it was revealed that 93 percent of their audience is Saudis.
Media studies show that cinemas in Saudi Arabia can secure a sizable market with annual profits up to SR1 billion. Currently, up to 86 percent of the Saudi population watches movies on TV, while 49 percent watch their films on Internet sites such as Netflix.
Although the concept of “going to the cinema” is almost alien to young Saudis, speculations can be made when it comes to ticket prices. A single ticket can cost between SR30-45 in comparison to other Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries such as the UAE and Bahrain.
Even before they had a local platform, Saudi filmmakers managed to leave an imprint on the market screening up to 60 films this year. Wadjda, a 2013 film directed by Haifaa Al-Mansour, was the first Saudi film to be submitted for an Academy Award, though it was not nominated.


Saudi Arabia’s first ‘smart’ pharmacy inaugurated

Updated 20 min 24 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia’s first ‘smart’ pharmacy inaugurated

TABUK: Prince Fahd bin Sultan, governor of Tabuk region, inaugurated the Kingdom’s first smart pharmacy — operated by a robot — at King Fahd Specialist Hospital on Thursday, following his meeting with the province’s director general of health affairs, Ghurmallah bin Abdullah Al-Ghamdi.
It is hoped that the smart pharmacy — which can dispense 1,500 packages of medicine per hour, store over 20,000 packages of medicine, reject expired drugs, and deal with 240 prescriptions per hour — will save the time of patients and pharmacists, ensure better control of drug stocks, provide the highest safety standards, and reduce medication errors.
The pharmacy has six outlets, one of which is dedicated to serving disabled people.
Prince Fahd congratulated Tabuk Health Affairs on this achievement, which he said would contribute to better health care services.
He stressed that serving citizens was the main objective and praised the role of young men and women in meeting the requirements of the future.
He also thanked King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their support for the health care sector in Saudi Arabia.
Al-Ghamdi thanked Prince Fahd for his support for the health care sector in the province.