Saudi foreign minister sees deals with UK during crown prince’s visit

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir and his British counterpart Boris Johnson tour the site of the first British embassy in the historic quarter of Jeddah. Saudi Arabia expects to sign agreements with Britain covering a range of issues during Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit to London. (File Photo: AFP)
Updated 05 March 2018
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Saudi foreign minister sees deals with UK during crown prince’s visit

LONDON: Saudi Arabia expects to sign agreements with Britain covering a range of issues during Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit to London this week, Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said on Monday.
Britain’s planned exit from the European Union did not reduce its attractiveness as an investment destination, the minister told reporters, and he said he expected the crown prince’s visit to take bilateral relations to a higher level.
“Our relationship is so strong that the talks will be broad and wide ranging. There will be agreements and memorandums of understanding signed in a number of areas involving a broad range of issues,” he said during a media briefing at the Saudi embassy.
Al-Jubeir provided no further details on the agreements nor on the precise agenda for the crown prince’s visit. He declined to comment on any progress in plans to list giant oil firm Saudi Aramco and whether that might happen in London or New York.
Asked whether Britain’s departure from the EU, scheduled for March 2019, would affect Riyadh’s view of how attractive Britain is as an investment destination, Al-Jubeir said: “We don’t think so. We think that Britain is one of the great powers.
“British ingenuity and British technology and British know-how is not going to change whether you’re part of the EU or not part of the EU.”


Saudi ministry: More than 3 million Umrah visas issued so far

The Vision 2030 reform plan aims to attract more than 30 million Umrah pilgrims, and provide them with excellent services and an outstanding experience. (SPA)
Updated 20 January 2019
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Saudi ministry: More than 3 million Umrah visas issued so far

  • Developing Hajj and Umrah organizations and services in the Kingdom is among the top priorities of the Saudi government

JEDDAH: The number of Umrah visas issued this year has reached 3,024,272, of which 2,561,541 pilgrims have arrived in the Kingdom, according to data provided by the Hajj and Umrah Ministry.
There are 399,479 pilgrims still in the Kingdom, with 277,372 in Makkah and 122,107 in Madinah.
Most pilgrims — 2,288,789 — came to the Kingdom by air, while 257,266 entered by land and 15,486 arrived by sea.
The largest number of pilgrims are from Pakistan (681,392) followed by Indonesia (447,450), India (306,470), Yemen (146,067), Malaysia (142,290), Algeria (92,752), Turkey (86,925), Egypt (85,438), Bangladesh (53,131) and the UAE (62,927).
The weekly data also included the number of Saudi staff within Umrah companies and institutions. They are 9,983 Saudis including 8,259 males and 1,724 females.
Developing Hajj and Umrah organizations and services in the Kingdom is among the top priorities of the Saudi government.
The Vision 2030 reform plan aims to attract more than 30 million Umrah pilgrims, and provide them with excellent services and an outstanding experience.