Saudi Event Show attracts key players from the industry

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Visitors at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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Visitors at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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Visitors at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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Visitors at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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An exhibitor explaining things to visitors at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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A session in progress at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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A session in progress at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
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Audience for a session at Saudi Event Show in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 27 September 2019

Saudi Event Show attracts key players from the industry

  • The first day of the event hosted several renowned speakers

RIYADH: With the event industry growing in Saudi Arabia in line with the Saudi Vision 2030 reform plans, the Kingdom is poised to become the central destination for events in the region.

According to industry experts who participated in the Saudi Event Show, which concluded here on Thursday, the events and entertainment sector in the Kingdom is set to undergo a major expansion in the coming years.

The two-day show held at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center, which attracted more than 2,000 events and entertainment professionals and 50 innovative exhibitors from across the industry, offered a platform for the attendees to meet and engage with key local and international stakeholders and discuss the Kingdom’s prospective opportunities for the industry.

The first day of the event hosted several renowned speakers including Mohammed Tayem, CEO entourage marketing and events, Basil Al-Dossary, CEO at Takamul Smart Technology, Alessandro Gaffuri, founder and CEO, CELS Group and Philip Wride CEO of Cheesecake Digital.

In the opening session, Al-Dossary discussed how the events and entertainment market is growing at a rapid pace in the Kingdom and with the introduction of cutting-edge technologies, companies will better engage and involve local audiences.

Al-Dossary told Arab News: “My focus was on digital transformation in the event space and how crucial is this for the sector. Digital transformation helps organizations automate and optimize resources and also perform data mining.”

He added that digital transformation is one of the cornerstones of the Vision 2030 reform plans and going digital is no longer a luxury but a must to take things to the next level.

This event, he said, shows the interest of the government to structure and govern the event management space and allow Saudi businessmen to get into a new sector.

“Saudi Arabia will become the first destination of the event in the region, be it in the entertainment side of cultural side, the country is really witnessing a significant growth into the event management space,” Al-Dossary added.

In another session, Tayem highlighted the role of the event industry in supporting the Vision 2030 reform plans and supporting the regional economy.

“We are witnessing a big surge in positive momentum ever since Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman mandated the entertainment and events industry to become a key engine of economic growth,” he said.

“Saudi Arabia currently spends $22 billion on tourism and entertainment and wide-scale efforts are underway to build a strong local entertainment industry,” he added.

The second day of the event featured numerous keynote speeches and panel discussions highlighting the changing face of the event industry in the Kingdom and the role of startups and innovation in the event industry.

Experts emphasized that the industry has evolved as one of the most promising business propositions for a country’s holistic growth in tourism and commerce and that recent developments in Saudi Arabia narrate a bright chronicle.

“The overwhelming interest from the participants and exhibitors at Saudi Event Show underscores the desire and potential of Saudi Arabia’s events and entertainment market,” said Amar Daginawala, exhibition manager at Informa, the organizer of the show.

Saudi Arabia could return to extreme precautionary restrictions, minister warns

Penalties will be doubled upon repetition of the violation. (SPA)
Updated 1 min 14 sec ago

Saudi Arabia could return to extreme precautionary restrictions, minister warns

  • People not wearing masks will be fined

JEDDAH: The Kingdom could return to extreme precautionary restrictions if the number of COVID-19 patients exceeds the medical sector’s capacity, Saudi Arabia’s Health Minister Tawfiq Al-Rabiah warned on Saturday.

“Public awareness and adherence to precautionary measures is essential to continue the ease of restrictions,” Al-Rabiah told Al-Arabiya on Saturday. “We continue monitoring the situation based on the number of critical cases in hospitals and their capacity to receive them. We want to be able to receive all cases that reach out to us and provide them with the care that they need. We are all in one boat in this situation, we are one team, and we must work together cautiously. Lack of commitment will definitely take us back to where we were.”

The minister expressed his concern about overcrowding in some public places during the Eid holidays, adding that while crowds were likely at the initial phase of the ‘unlock’ he remained optimistic about the public’s awareness level.

The minister said that although children were the least likely to be infected they could carry the virus without symptoms. He advised families to keep children away from elderly members of their families such as grandparents.

There were 1,618 new cases reported in Saudi Arabia, meaning that 83,384 people have now contracted the disease. There are currently 24,501 active cases.

The Health Ministry announced that 1,870 more patients had recovered from COVID-19, bringing the total number of recoveries to 58,883. More than 70 percent of coronavirus patients in the Kingdom have recovered from the disease.

There were 22 new COVID-19-related deaths reported on Saturday, raising the total number of fatalities to 480.


• 58,883 recoveries

• 24,501 active cases

The ministry has assigned 30 health practitioners to carry out the third stage of an expanded examination plan to assess the prevalence of COVID-19 in the city of Makkah.

The examination will take place at a center in the Al-Zaidi district, where citizens and expats will be tested inside their cars through 12 tracks without the need to leave their vehicles. The center has the capacity for over 1,000 tests daily and these will be carried out through appointments made on the ministry’s Sehaty app.

Adjustments to previously announced social-distancing measures and regulations were announced by the Saudi Interior Ministry on Saturday. These include new violation penalties, as the second stage of restriction-easing starts on May 31.

Individuals who intentionally violate regulations will pay SR1,000 ($266). Breaches include not wearing a mask, not committing to social distancing marks and areas, refusing to undergo temperature checks at entrances, or not adhering to preventive protocols if their temperature is higher than 38 degrees Celsius.

The ministry amended the maximum number of people allowed for social gatherings inside homes, rest houses, farms, or in social events such as funerals and parties to 50 people.

Private sector establishments that are found to be non-compliant with new preventive measures and protocols will pay a penalty of SR10,000.

This penalty covers violations such as admitting entry to individuals not wearing medical or cloth masks, lack of disinfectants and sterilizers, not checking employee and customer temperatures at entrances, lack of sterilization on shopping facilities, cart surfaces and shopping baskets after each use, as well as opening fitting rooms and children’s play areas.
Penalties will be doubled upon repetition of the violation.