KSA, Philippines mark 50 years of diplomatic ties

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman during the former’s state visit to the Kingdom in 2017.
Updated 11 June 2019
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KSA, Philippines mark 50 years of diplomatic ties

On June 12, the Philippines commemorates the 121st anniversary of its independence. The theme of this year’s national day celebrations is “Courage of the Nation, Compassion for the People.” It highlights the bravery, patriotism and collective sacrifices of the Filipino people in the struggle for the country’s independence, from the past’s colonial experience to today’s challenges to nation-building including poverty, threats to national security, and many more.

The 121st Philippine Independence Day anniversary coincides with the 50 years of diplomatic relations between the Philippines and Saudi Arabia, which can best be described as “thriving, productive and mutually beneficial.”

Since the 70s up to today, the Kingdom has been a top destination for overseas Filipino workers (OFWs). Currently, there are an estimated 800,000-plus OFWs working in Saudi Arabia, contributing to the Kingdom’s socio-economic development and the Philippines’s phenomenal economic growth in recent years. In this regard, the Philippines is grateful to the government of Saudi Arabia for opening new channels to safeguard the rights and welfare of foreign migrant workers, including the establishment of a call center hotline, which includes Filipino as a language in the system; the establishment of Labor Disputes and Household Violations Settlement Committees in all areas and provinces of the Kingdom; and the establishment of the Support Protection Office by the Ministry of Labor and Social Development as a means to provide protection, welfare and support to household workers in the Kingdom, among others. 

Besides being the Philippines’ top source for its oil needs, Saudi Arabia remains a significant economic partner of the Philippines. 

In 2017, the Philippines and Saudi Arabia further enhanced their relations through various initiatives and agreements entered into during the successful state visit of President Rodrigo Duterte to the Kingdom in April of that year. The relationship has since diversified to include other areas, including peace and security. Today, the Philippines and Saudi Arabia are active partners in the global fight against terrorism and violent extremism.

The Philippines and Saudi Arabia are both guided by long-term national visions. In the case of the Philippines, the vision is enshrined in the AmBisyon Natin 2040 — a 25-year vision for development planning for the Philippines, which will guide its government toward the achievement of the vision and aspiration of a prosperous, predominantly middle class society where Filipinos enjoy a strongly rooted, comfortable, and secure life by the year 2040 or earlier. 

On the other hand, the Kingdom has Saudi Vision 2030 under which it envisages the Saudi economy to be less dependent on oil, with more opportunities for non-oil industries, as well as a more open policy for foreign investors and tourism that will spur growth and development in the country by 2030. The Philippines hopes for the success of Saudi Vision 2030 and stands ready to support it anyway it can.


Rove At The Park opens in Dubai Parks and Resorts

Updated 17 June 2019
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Rove At The Park opens in Dubai Parks and Resorts

Rove Hotels, a contemporary midscale hotel brand, has opened its sixth hotel in Dubai — Rove At The Park — in Dubai Parks and Resorts, the largest integrated theme park destination in the region. As the opening offer, guests can stay at Rove At The Park for 199 dirhams ($54) per night inclusive of two tickets to Dubai Parks and Resorts.
Rove At The Park has 579 rooms and interconnecting family rooms. Guests at Dubai Parks and Resorts can access more than 100 fun rides and attractions spread across Motiongate Dubai, Bollywood Parks Dubai, Legoland Dubai and Legoland Water Park. This is in addition to free access to themed zones, street ambiance and numerous shops and restaurants at Riverland Dubai.
On the opening of the new hotel, Paul Bridger, corporate director of operations, Rove Hotels, said: “Guests love Rove Hotels for their convenient locations, funky interiors, chilled ambience and great service, which have made the brand one of the most popular in the city. We are excited to open Rove At The Park, our sixth and largest property in Dubai. The hotel offers a launchpad to discover Dubai Parks and Resorts and the rest of the city.”
Ahmed Al-Rayyes, chief retail and hospitality officer, DXB Entertainments, the company that owns Dubai Parks and Resorts, said:
“Dubai Parks and Resorts is a dynamic leisure destination with attractions that appeal to families, couples, and theme park enthusiasts from around the globe. With the opening of Rove At The Park, guests will have easy access to a vibrant new hotel that is perfect for residents looking for a quick weekend getaway. Opening a second hotel is part of Dubai Parks and Resorts’ strategy to have more than 1,300 keys at the destination by the second half of 2020. We look forward to welcoming even more tourists who will now be able to enjoy rides and attractions at the park, with the option of a conveniently located hotel in the vicinity.”
Rove At The Park is just over half an hour drive from the Dubai International Airport and the Al-Maktoum International Airport. Additionally, the hotel is just minutes away from the future Expo 2020 location, making it convenient for visitors traveling to the exhibition.
The design of Rove At The Park is inspired by the local area and uses art to tell stories and offer Instagrammable moments throughout the hotel. All 579 rooms house a 48-inch interactive TV screen with a smart media hub and free Wi-Fi. The rooms have designer mattresses, pull-out beds for extra guests, a mini-fridge, a large safe, and a modern bathroom with power rain showers.