King Salman inaugurates $22 billion of projects for Riyadh region

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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
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Various projects were inaugurated for the Riyadh region on Wednesday. (SPA)
Updated 14 February 2019
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King Salman inaugurates $22 billion of projects for Riyadh region

  • The developments aim to enhance crucial infrastructure, such as transportation and housing, and improve amenities, the environment and education

RIYADH: King Salman has launched an ambitious program of projects in the Riyadh region worth billions, which will enhance the living standards of residents in a province that he has helped to shape for more than 50 years.

The 1,281 development projects in the Saudi capital and surrounding towns will cost about SR 82 billion ($22 billion). They aim to enhance crucial infrastructure, such as transportation and housing, and improve amenities, the environment and education.

The program includes: 15 housing projects in Riyadh and its governorates, in line with the objectives of Vision 2030 to increase house ownership among citizens; the establishment of the largest Islamic museum in the capital; a huge environmental project for the lakes south of the capital covering an area of 315,000 square meters; sports cities; seven medical cities; 16 educational projects; quality entertainment facilities; the expansion of airports; and the development and upgrading of the road network.

The projects were announced on Feb. 13 by Prince Faisal bin Bandar, the governor of Riyadh region, during an official inauguration event at Qasr Al-Hukm, in the presence of King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and other dignitaries. They are part of a wider program of 2,830 projects planned for Riyadh at a total cost of SR 338 billion, which are expected to create tens of thousands of job opportunities for young men and women.

During the inauguration, the king ordered the release of citizens of the region jailed on financial charges who are not involved in criminal cases, whose debts do not exceed SR 1 million riyals and whose insolvency can be proved. He also ordered the payment of their debts.

Considered the “engineer” of the city, King Salman served as governor of Riyadh for almost five decades, during which he oversaw the transformation of the Saudi capital into a modern, thriving metropolis and one of the most important cities in the Middle East.


‘I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi Arabia for years’: Akon tells Asharqiah crowd

Updated 23 March 2019
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‘I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi Arabia for years’: Akon tells Asharqiah crowd

  • “First thing tomorrow morning, I’m headed to Makkah to perform Umrah” Akon said 
  • He entertained the crowd with some of his most popular hits at the Asharqiah Music Festival

DAMMAM: American rapper Akon captivated a packed crowd at the Asharqiah Music Festival on Friday, opening up the second night of musical festivities at Sharqiah Season with a special shout-out to Saudi Arabia.

“You have no idea, I’ve been waiting to get to Saudi for years, man,” Akon said, before launching into his song, “Gunshot.” Later, he told the crowd: “I’m seeing a tremendous change in Saudi Arabia here tonight."

At 8 p.m., under a bright moon on a beautifully cool night, Akon began his set, delighting fans who had spent over 10 minutes chanting his name in anticipation of his arrival.

He entertained the crowd with some of his most popular hits, including “Smack That,” “Mr. Lonely” and “Sorry: Blame It On Me.” And he wrapped things up with “I love you, Saudi... thank you for making me feel at home."

Backstage before the concert, Akon told Arab News how excited he was to be in Saudi Arabia for the first time. He was especially excited to visit one Saudi city in particular.

“First thing tomorrow morning, I’m headed to Makkah to perform Umrah.”