Spain’s experience and expertise in tourism has already helped Saudi Arabia and more Spanish businesses will hopefully join the leading tourism players already working with the kingdom, Saudi tourism minister Ahmed Al Khateeb has said.
“I was very pleased to share our vision and plans with Spanish businesses in Riyadh today. Saudi’s fast-growing tourism sector is one of the most exciting opportunities in the world. Last year was a record year for domestic tourism, and we are aiming to attract 70 million international and domestic visitors this year,” Al Khateeb said.
Saudi Ministry of Investment of Saudi Arabia (MISA) on Sunday hosted a Spanish investment forum, which was, besides Al Khateeb, attended by Abdulrahman Al Fadhli, Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture, and Marya Reyes Maroto, Spain’s Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism.
Spanish private sector representatives also were present at the forum aimed at strengthening investment partnerships in sustainable tourism.
The forum took place on the sidelines of the 116th session of the United Nations World Tourism Organization in Jeddah.
Al Fadhli said: “Saudi Arabia and Spain have historic bilateral ties dating back 60 years and today signifies our shared ambitions to seize investment opportunities and unleash growth with our tourism industries. This is yet further evidence of the growing confidence that businesses around the world have in Saudi Arabia as an investment destination of untapped opportunity.”
“As the Kingdom wide-sweeping economic and social reforms continue to transform the Kingdom, our National Investment Strategy will continue to unlock game-changing investment opportunities in the tourism sector,” he added.
The forum follows several successful events hosted this year by the Ministry of Investment to bolster global bilateral relationships and support foreign investment attraction.
Al Khateeb and Marya Reyes Maroto also met on the sidelines of the fifth edition of the Future Investment Initiative in October last year.
Earlier this year the Saudi government announced plans to invest a further $1 trillion dollars in the tourism sector over the next 10 years.