Projected Haj spending reaches SR17 billion

Updated 30 September 2015
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Projected Haj spending reaches SR17 billion

MAKKAH: The volume of spending expected during the current Haj season is approximately SR17 billion, according to Maher Saleh Jamal, chairman of the Board of Directors of the Makkah Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Talking to an online newspaper, Maher Saleh Jamal said that spending is expected to increase during next year's Haj season once the expansion plan of the Holy Mosque in Makkah is completed.
He further confirmed that this year, the Haj and Umrah sectors have been running at a loss due to a reduction in the number of Haj pilgrims coming to the country. The most badly affected sector has reportedly been the accommodation sector, which now has a surplus of 700,000 beds. According to Jamal, all sectors related to Haj have suffered over the past three years due to the expansion project of the Holy Mosque.
Jamal said that the one of the major economic industries in Makkah is the accommodation sector, where massive investments have been made in hotel rooms, apartments, and residential buildings. Regarding spending levels during Haj season, he said that total figures usually reach SR26 billion per year, yet this figure has declined by 20 percent to just SR17 billion since the expansion works began.


FaceOf: Ahmad Al-Khatib, chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Arabian Military Industries

Ahmad Al-Khatib
Updated 27 May 2018
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FaceOf: Ahmad Al-Khatib, chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Arabian Military Industries

  • Saudi Arabian Military Industries aims to aims to reduce the country’s reliance on foreign purchases of military products

JEDDAH: Ahmad Al-Khatib was appointed the chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) in October 2017. 

He also holds the posts of chairman of the board of directors of the General Entertainment Authority (GEA) since 2016; chairman of the board of directors of the Saudi Fund for Development; adviser to the general secretariat of the Cabinet; adviser to the minister of defense; and adviser to the court of the crown prince.

Al-Khatib inaugurated on Friday the new facilities of the Aircraft Accessories and Components Company (AACC) at its new headquarters at King Abdul Aziz International Airport in Jeddah during a ceremony under the patronage of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

SAMI aims to reduce the country’s reliance on foreign purchases of military products and become one of the top 25 global companies in the field of military industries.

“Our goal is to localize more than 50 percent of the Kingdom’s military spending by 2030,” said the crown prince in his earlier statement.

Al-Khatib is a former adviser to the royal court, was the minister of health between 2014 and 2016, and served as the chairman for the Saudi stock company established in 2006, Jadwa Investment.

Al-Khatib has 23 years of experience in banking. In 1992 he joined the Bank of Riyad, working in various departments for 11 years and helping to establish the customer investment department. 

In 2003, Al-Khatib joined SABB Bank and participated in the establishment of Islamic Banking (Amanah). He then became the bank’s general manager.