Saudi Crown Prince invites Archbishop of Canterbury to visit Kingdom

Prince Mohammed and the Archbishop viewed fragments of a Qur’an manuscript found in a Birmingham University library.
Updated 09 March 2018
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Saudi Crown Prince invites Archbishop of Canterbury to visit Kingdom

LONDON: The Archbishop of Canterbury has been invited to visit Saudi Arabia by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Arab News has exclusively learned from senior sources at the Saudi Embassy in the UK and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The sources told Arab News a “very positive and very pleasant” meeting took place between the Crown Prince and the Archbishop in London yesterday.

Earlier this week, Prince Mohammed said that all Coptic Christians were welcome in Saudi Arabia, during a tour of Cairo’s main Cathedral.

The Crown Prince met Archbishop Justin Welby in Lambeth Palace, where they spoke for an hour.

“The Crown Prince made a strong commitment to promote the flourishing of those of different faith traditions, and to interfaith dialogue within the Kingdom and beyond,” a Lambeth Palace statement said.

Prince Mohammed and the Archbishop viewed fragments of a Qur'an manuscript found in a Birmingham University library in 2015, thought to be among the world’s oldest. They also viewed a selection of early Christian and Jewish texts.

On the second full day of his landmark visit to the UK, some of the biggest corporate names from Saudi Arabia and the UK announced deals worth SR8 billion ($2.13 billion).

As CEOs from both countries gathered at a forum in London’s Mansion House, 18 agreements were signed between them.

During the three-day visit, the countries have set out plans to build £65 billion ($90.29 billion) of trade and investment ties.

Among the new partnerships, a preliminary agreement was signed between Saudi Aramco and Royal Dutch Shell.

Other deals covered sectors including health, investment, innovation and energy.

The Crown Prince also met British finance minister Philip Hammond at the Saudi embassy in London as well as members of the British parliament from different political parties.

The Crown Prince’s visit also coincided with International Women’s Day.

Hoda Al-Helaissi, a member of the Shoura Council, told an event at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) think tank that empowering women is “crucial” to transforming Saudi Arabia.

“A country’s true development can only come about... when it uses 100 percent of its human resources, male and female,” she said.


Budding businesses make their case at Riyadh conferences

The event was attended by Commerce Minister Majid Al-Qassabi. (SPA)
Updated 13 December 2018
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Budding businesses make their case at Riyadh conferences

  • The event featured a number of dynamic initiatives to support entrepreneurs, including interactive workshops and pop-up stores for Instagram businesses

RIYADH: Thousands of start-up owners, investors and other visitors flooded into the capital for two events in Riyadh on Wednesday.
The ArabNet Riyadh conference, which focuses on digital businesses in the Gulf region, and ArabNet’s Monsha’at Startup Saudi, attracted regional and international digital business leaders and investors who came to share the latest trends and business opportunities with an audience of more than 4,000 up-and-coming entrepreneurs and students and 200 start-ups.
The event was attended by Commerce Minister Majid Al-Qassabi and Saleh Al-Rasheed, governor of the General Authority of Small and Medium Enterprises (Monsha’at), in addition to more than 300 global and regional leaders.
“At Monsha’at, we seek to support small and medium-sized enterprises and empower them in the drive for economic development,” said Al-Rasheed.
“This is a great addition to the Kingdom’s business community,” said ArabNet CEO and Founder Omar Christidis. “Thousands of attendees presented business plans to 100 investors from around the globe. Conferences like this bring together key stakeholders that are critical for the growth of the digital sector.”
“Here at this conference, we have regulators and corporations that represent some of the largest customer bases in innovation,” he added.
The opening ceremony was followed by a high-profile panel that discussed the components needed to make Saudi Arabia the region’s next Silicon Valley.
The panel featured prominent figures, including Careem Co-Founder Abdulla Elyas, Omar Al-Madhi, senior managing editor of Abdul Latif Jameel, and Khalil Al-Shafei, CEO and managing director at Saudi Aramco Entrepreneurship Venture.
The event also featured a number of dynamic initiatives to support entrepreneurs, including interactive workshops and pop-up stores for Instagram businesses. The event also allowed one-on-one meetings between executives and start-ups.