Dur Hospitality chairman lauds creation of tourism fund

Dur Hospitality Chairman Abdullah bin Mohammed Al-Issa
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Updated 29 June 2020

Dur Hospitality chairman lauds creation of tourism fund

Abdullah bin Mohammed Al-Issa, chairman of the board of directors of Dur Hospitality, has lauded the creation of a tourism development fund with an initial $4 billion investment. The Tourism Development Fund, announced recently by the Ministry of Tourism, will launch equity and debt investment vehicles to develop the tourism sector in collaboration with private and investment banks.

Al-Issa praised Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for his ambitious vision and for initiating the fund, and expressed appreciation for the formation of the fund’s board of directors chaired by Minister of Tourism Ahmad bin Aqil Al-Khatib.

“It is an exceptional initiative that reflects the wise leadership’s insightful vision of supporting non-oil sectors, particularly the tourism sector, as major contributors to Saudi Vision 2030,” said Al-Issa. He underlined the fund’s role in raising the non-oil GDP, creating jobs, and attracting local and foreign investments to the sector, in line with the goals of the national vision, and its role in the development of the tourism industry.

The hospitality veteran anticipated a new era of excellence through the Tourism Development Fund and thanked the minister of tourism for his remarkable efforts in developing the Saudi tourism industry and steering it through many challenges. He said the fund has been launched at the “perfect time” and it will contribute to outlining a road map for reviving and developing the tourism sector in the post-COVID-19 era. The initiative will also help in setting plans aimed at facing the current and upcoming challenges and devising effective solutions.

According to Al-Issa, the fund will play a pivotal role in supporting several mega projects and developing new tourist destinations by acting as a stimulus for the private sector, encouraging it to enhance its contribution to the tourism industry by providing viable investment opportunities for it.

He also expressed Dur’s interest in benefiting from this initiative and highlighted the company’s readiness to contribute to the development of hotel projects and establish local and international partnerships to attract investments to the tourism sector.

Virtual BMG forum to spotlight Saudi investment

Updated 07 July 2020

Virtual BMG forum to spotlight Saudi investment

More than 20 high-level Saudi government representatives and 15 local and international CEOs will bring to light post-pandemic investment opportunities in Saudi Arabia at the 2020 BMG Economic Forum, which will go virtual this year.

The forum, with a 25-year history, will be held on July 15 from 2 p.m. to 8:45 p.m. KSA time.

The forum is organized by BMG Financial Group and its CSR arm, BMG Foundation, and is part of the BMG Summer Retreat, which always takes place in the UK and also hosts a polo match, with the presence of Saudi and British royals among participants.

“In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, the Saudi economy needs foreign investment more than ever,” said Basil Al-Ghalayini, chairman and CEO, BMG Financial Group. “Saudi Arabia is on a journey of economic diversification, which offers many investment opportunities, and international investors have for several years been encouraged by the clear direction that Vision 2030 offers as well as by the huge improvement in the prestigious annual world competitiveness rankings by the Swiss IMD.”

Explaining the role and purpose of the 2020 BMG Economic Forum, Al-Ghalayini said: “Now that we are focused on post-pandemic recovery, the international investor community is keen to get a comprehensive update on the Saudi economy as well as on key industries — those that are the pillars of the transformation of the Saudi economy. Therefore, the timing of the annual BMG Economic Forum has never been better, and we are proud to host a very prestigious lineup of speakers and welcome over 500 participants.”

The recently launched tourism development fund and the opportunities for accelerating the recovery will be a leitmotiv for the virtual BMG Economic Forum this year. Saudi government officials and local and international business executives will discuss the investment opportunities for foreign investors and Saudi organizations.

In the tradition of BMG Foundation Classics’ charitable summer concerts in London, the foundation will this year unite an orchestra with musicians representing the G20 countries, including musicians from Nova Orchester Wien. The concert will be broadcast live digitally from Ehrbar Hall in Vienna, Austria, at the end of the BMG Economic Forum.

Reflecting international cooperation within the G20 group of nations, 20 young musicians will come together to play a concert of Eastern and Western music, conducted by Maestro William Garfield Walker, a young American conductor based in Vienna. The program features music composed by Syrian-Argentinian composer Diego Collatti, including traditional Arabic music, arranged specially for this concert, in the classical tradition of Western music.

Other sectors and themes featuring on the forum agenda include: The new mining law, what is next for Saudi capital markets, energy, international supply chains and food security strategy revisited.

The confirmed speakers include: Bander Al-Khorayef, Saudi minister of industry and mineral resources; Stephen Groff, governor, Saudi National Development Fund; Dr. Frank Appel, CEO, Deutsche Post DHL Group; Paddy Padmanathan, president and CEO of ACWA Power; Dr. Ali Parsa, founder and CEO of Babylon Health; Ali Alireza, managing director, Haji Husein Alireza and Co. Ltd.; Reema Al-Asmari, CEO, corporate and investment banking KSA, Natixis; Richad Soundardjee, CEO, Societe Generale Middle East; Nicholas Naples, CEO, Amaala; and Khalid Al-Hussan, CEO, Tadawul and Hussain Shobokshi, Businessman, Consultant and Columnist.


The prominent speakers will also cover topics such as privatization, partnerships and digitization in health care and sustainable investment trends.