Egypt, Yemen are top recipients of Saudi aid

Updated 19 May 2015

Egypt, Yemen are top recipients of Saudi aid

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has given Arab nations SR85 billion ($22.7 billion) in direct aid over 40 months, local media reported, quoting a report released by the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Egypt captured the biggest portion at SR24.4 billion ($6.5 billion), with SR22.3 billion ($5.9 billion) delivered directly to the country. Saudi direct aid represented nearly 2.3 percent of Egypt’s gross domestic product (GDP).
Yemen was the second top recipient of direct aid, with SR14.3 billion ($3.8 billion) allocated, but only SR4.4 billion ($1.2 billion) delivered due to political developments in that country. Saudi direct aid represented nearly 8.4 percent of Yemen’s GDP, the report said.
Jordan was the third top recipient, with SR11.2 billion ($3 billion) allocated but SR7.2 billion ($1.9 billion) delivered. This represented nearly 8.1 percent of Jordan’s GDP, the report said.
Bahrain came in fourth, with the Saudi government allocating SR10.7 billion ($2.8 billion), which represented nearly 8.4 percent of its GDP. Oman was fifth at SR9.4 billion ($2.5 billion), representing nearly 3.1 percent of its GDP, the report said.
The West Bank and Gaza Strip were sixth at SR6.7 billion ($1.8 billion) which represented nearly 14.4 percent of the Palestinian GDP, followed by Morocco at SR6.1 billion ($1.6 billion), or 1.5 percent of its GDP, Sudan at SR2 billion ($527 million), or 0.8 percent of its GDP, and Djibouti at SR255 million ($68 million, or 4.3 percent of its GDP, the report said.


Culture Minister Prince Badr salutes ‘the father of arts’ as musical play launches Saudi Theater Initiative

Updated 29 January 2020

Culture Minister Prince Badr salutes ‘the father of arts’ as musical play launches Saudi Theater Initiative

RIYADH: The curtain rose on Tuesday night on a sparkling new musical play — and on an ambitious new era for Saudi theater.

“Daraish Al-Nour” (Windows of Light), written by poet Saleh Zamanan and directed by Fatees Baqna, launched the National Theater Initiative at the King Fahd Cultural Center in Riyadh.

The play, with a cast of local actors including Naif Khalaf, Khaled Saqr and Ibrahim Al-Hassawi, explores Saudi culture past and present, and includes a number of pop-culture and historical references that older audiences in particular will appreciate.

Applause, cheers and whistles rang out through the theater at the end of every act, whether the scene on stage was a cheerful, traditional Saudi dance, or a more intense, dramatic scene full of angst.

The performance was introduced by the Minister of Culture, Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, who described theater as “ the father of arts.” He added: “We have great expectations regarding the future of the art of theater in Saudi Arabia. We want Saudi Arabia to be a leader in the field.”

Abdul Aziz Ismail, president of the National Theater Initiative, said theater was important in Saudi culture and the new scheme was a great step forward for the art form. “Our culture will be reborn through this historic moment,” he said. “We are going to express our culture through our theater.”