SCTA, Haia join forces to boost local tourism

SCTA, Haia join forces to boost local tourism
Updated 17 September 2014

SCTA, Haia join forces to boost local tourism

SCTA, Haia join forces to boost local tourism

In a first-of-its-kind move, the Saudi Commission for Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA) joined forces with the Commission for Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (Haia) to promote domestic tourism.
Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al Deaileej, director-general of the Haia, and Abdullah Al-Sawat, director-general of the SCTA in Taif, discussed mechanisms of joint cooperation between the two organizations, as well as ways to put into effect articles of cooperation in developing the vital sector.
The meeting discussed the prospects of SCTA staff training Haia staff to deal with tourists, especially in Taif, known by some as the “capital of Arab resorts.”
Domestic tourism is witnessing rapid growth in the Kingdom, with the SCTA recording 5.8 million domestic trips during summer this year, according to a 2014 report that was recently released by the Tourism Information and Research Center (MAS), the statistical arm of the SCTA.
This is compared with 5.5 million tourist trips during the same period last year, an increase of 5.4 percent.
The report further said that over SR6.2 billion was spent on domestic tourism, compared with SR5 billion during the same period last year, a 24-percent increase.
By contrast, foreign expenditure exceeded SR29.6 billion this summer, compared with SR22.3 billion during the same period in 2013, registering a growth rate of 32.7 percent.
Dubai, Bahrain and Qatar were at the forefront of tourism destinations, attracting just over half of Saudi tourists, followed by other Middle East countries (29.6 percent), South Asian countries (9.2 percent) and Europe and America (10.2 percent).