8,000 tourist guides are needed by 2030

BOOSTING TOURISM: Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage, inaugurates the National Festival organized by the Saudi Aviation Club, on Friday as part of the National Day celebrations in Jeddah. (SPA)
Updated 25 September 2016

8,000 tourist guides are needed by 2030

JEDDAH: A member of the Saudi Society for Tourist Guides (SSTG), Ahmed Al-Jaid, has estimated the number of tourist guides needed to cope with goals set by Vision 2030 at 8,000.

The linkage between the goals of Vision 2030 and the tourism sector are many, such as the supporting and increasing recreational activities, improving the quality of life in cities, developing the tourism sector, and creating an attractive environment for foreign and local investors.
Prince Sultan bin Salman, the president of Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH), said in an article: “The transformation in the tourism sector has become easier and more acceptable than before, and the reason for this is the existence of a real tourist sector and of an enormous market for tourism.”
Prince Sultan said: “We hope that tourism will be the leader of the new economy ... as King Salman wants to develop tourism and the heritage sector.”
Al-Jaid told a local newspaper that the current number of tourist guides in Saudi Arabia is around 500; however, 8,000 licensed tourist guides are needed, including mutawif (pilgrim guides).
According to Al-Jaid, SCTNH and the SSTG provide courses for those working in the tourism sector to improve their skills and knowledge of the tourist routes and locations in the Kingdom.

Saudi Cabinet congratulates security forces for thwarting terror cell

King Salman chairs the virtual meeting. (SPA)
Updated 30 September 2020

Saudi Cabinet congratulates security forces for thwarting terror cell

  • King Salman thanked international leaders and officials for their messages of congratulations to the Kingdom and its people on the occasion of its 90th National Day

RIYADH: The Saudi Cabinet on Tuesday congratulated the Presidency of State Security for its work in identifying and apprehending the suspected members of a terror cell in the Kingdom.

Some of those who were arrested allegedly trained at sites in Iran run by the country’s Revolutionary Guards. A cache of weapons and explosives was also seized.

Ministers expressed their appreciation for the efforts of the presidency’s employees in tracking down those who threaten the security and stability of the Kingdom and the safety of those who live there.

Majid Al-Qasabi, the acting minister of media, said that while reviewing the latest regional and international developments, cabinet members reiterated the Kingdom’s call during the recent International Atomic Energy Agency General Conference for the international community to adopt a firm stance on Iran, and take steps to address its violations of international agreements relating to its nuclear-research program. They also reaffirmed Saudi support for efforts, in partnership with the international community, to make the Middle East a nuclear weapon-free zone.

The virtual meeting was chaired by King Salman, who began by passing on his condolences and sympathy to the people of Kuwait and the family of its Emir, Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, who died on Tuesday. He also congratulated the emir’s successor, Sheikh Nawaf Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah.

King Salman thanked international leaders and officials for their messages of congratulations to the Kingdom and its people on the occasion of its 90th National Day. He also briefed ministers on his recent telephone conversation with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, during which the two leaders reviewed bilateral relations and discussed opportunities to further develop them.

The cabinet commended the king for his speech during the UN’s 75th General Assembly in New York, during which he emphasized the his country’s continued commitment to assisting the international community in efforts to deal with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and address its humanitarian and economic implications.

Ministers also noted that his speech reflected the Kingdom’s dedication to security, stability and prosperity as a strategic choice, its call for peaceful coexistence, moderation and solidarity among all countries and peoples to address humanitarian challenges, its support for political solutions to conflicts, and its efforts to combat extremism in all its forms.

Al-Qasabi said that the Cabinet welcomed the announcement by the Kingdom that the G20 Leaders’ Summit will take place as planned as scheduled on Nov. 21 and 22, albeit virtually as a result of the pandemic. Saudi Arabia hold the presidency of the G20 this year.

Ministers also expressed their appreciation for international efforts, led by G20 countries, that have resulted in the provision of more than $21 billion to support the production of diagnostic and therapeutic tools during the pandemic, and the development and distribution of vaccines. In addition, more than $11 trillion has been allocated to protect the global economy, and more than $14 billion to mitigate the debt burdens of less-developed countries and help fund their health services and social programs. The Cabinet also reviewed the latest local and international developments in the pandemic, along with preparations for the safe resumption of Umrah.

Ministers reiterated the Saudi call, during an emergency meeting of the Council of Arab Ministers Responsible for Environmental Affairs, for urgent action to avoid an environmental catastrophe in the Red Sea as a result of the deteriorating condition of the oil tanker Safer, which has been anchored off the coast of Yemen, near Ras Issa port, since 2015.

The Cabinet also expressed its concern over developments in the dispute between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and urged both sides to agree a ceasefire and resolve the conflict peacefully in accordance with UN Security Council resolutions.