FaceOf: Turki Al-Shabanah, Saudi minister of media

Updated 29 December 2018

FaceOf: Turki Al-Shabanah, Saudi minister of media

  • He has held several key positions in the Arab media industry
  • Al-Shabanah was the chief executive officer of Rotana

In the wake of recent Cabinet reshuffle, Turki Al-Shabanah has been appointed the minister of media.

He is a media personality known for his association with Rotana, a popular TV network, as the chief executive officer.

The media group operates a network of 13 leading channels, several radio stations, and the world’s largest Arabic movie and music libraries. 

Variety magazine recently ranked Al-Shabanah one of the 500 most influential media personalities of the world.

He has held several key positions in the Arab media industry. In 1996, he was in charge of the MBC office in the US. He also served as assistant to the general supervisor of MBC in London before it moved to Dubai.

In 1999, he was appointed as MBC deputy program production director, a position he held until 2003.  Al-Shabanah launched Khalijia channel in May 2005. It was initially a music channel broadcasting mainly music videos from the Gulf region.

In 2008, Khalijia became a general-viewing channel broadcasting Saudi and Gulf region art and heritage, and taking the lead among others targeting the Gulf audience. He also served an adviser to Prince Alwaleed bin Talal between 2003 and 2007. 

He also served as the general supervisor of MBC FM radio station and supervised the production of a number of programs produced at its stations in Cairo, Beirut, Amman and Riyadh. He was also the director of Rotana and LBC TV channels. He also co-founded Charisma Productions Co. with Ayman Al-Zyoud.

Al-Shabanah holds a bachelor’s degree in law from King Saud University in Riyadh, and a master’s degree in international trade law from Washington University, US.

Before starting a career in the media, he started out as an attorney in the US.


Recent archaeological discoveries highlight Saudi Arabia as ‘a cradle of human civilizations,’ Rome conference told

Updated 06 December 2019

Recent archaeological discoveries highlight Saudi Arabia as ‘a cradle of human civilizations,’ Rome conference told

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has become a leader in the field of archaeological research in the past five years, a major exhibition in Rome was told.

Abdullah Al-Zahrani, director-general of archaeological research and studies at the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, said that 44 international archaeological missions had been carried out this year in the Kingdom.

He was speaking on the sidelines of the “Roads of Arabia: Masterpieces of Antiquities in Saudi Arabia Across the Ages” exhibition, which opened at the National Museum of Rome on Nov. 26.

The groundbreaking exhibition was inaugurated by Saudi Minister of Culture Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan and Italian Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities Dario Franceschini.

Al-Zahrani said that the Kingdom “has become one of the most advanced countries in terms of archaeological disclosures.”

“Recent discoveries by local and international missions have highlighted the Kingdom’s historical status and cultural depth as the cradle of the beginnings of human civilizations,” he said.

Archaeological discoveries continue to “instil the civilized dimension of the Kingdom,” he said.

“The religious, political, economic and cultural stature that Saudi Arabia enjoys is an extension of its long cultural heritage, in addition to its distinctive geographical position as a bridge and hub of cultural interaction between East and West that made it a meeting point for international land and sea trade routes throughout all ages,” he added.