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So that the world does not forget the tragedy in Syria

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Children walk through a neighbourhood in Zabadani, rural Damascus, in Syria. © UNICEF/Johnny Shahan

Syria is a small Arab country in size, its area does not exceed 185,180 km2, but it is a large country due to its influence. Syria has always played a much greater role than its area and capabilities, which made it the center of the attention of most countries in the region and the world, if not as an active state, then at least as a state that obstructs any action in the region that is incompatible with its policies. Hence, former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger summed up the importance of Syria in the region by saying:”The Arabs can’t make war without Egypt; and they can’t make peace without Syria.” From here, attempts to destroy Syria have begun because it is the only Arab country neighboring Israel and has not signed a peace treaty with it.

The Syrian people believe that humanity started from Syria, for Syria is the land of Adam and Eve, and it is the place in which the first two children in history, Abel and Cain, were born. The Syrian people are peaceful by nature, but this does not negate that the first action of killing, that humanity witnessed, was in Syria, when Cain killed his brother Abel, and Syrian people are still visiting Abel’s tomb near Damascus.

Before 2011, Syria lived a period of stability and prosperity, and the living conditions improved a lot, but despite that, Syria was suffering, like other countries, from corruption and lack of power, which is the dominant feature of most countries in the region and the world .

The war in Syria started as a result of many internal reasons, with external interventions from Arab and regional countries whose goal was to change the system in Syria. Syria today is a country devastated by the war that has entered its twelfth year. The war began in 2011, and the exchange rate of the dollar against the Syrian pound was 50 Syrian pounds to the dollar. Today, one dollar is approximately equal to 4000 pounds. Therefore, you should imagine how people live in a country where the family income does not exceed $25 per month.

What has added to the suffering of the Syrian people is the Western sanctions imposed on their country. With these sanctions, as in the rest of the world, the citizens are the ones affected by them. More than 95% of Syrian people are now living below the poverty line, especially since the term poverty does not mean securing the minimum food needs only, but also securing the minimum level of health, education and adequate housing as well. 86, 3% percent of Syrian families suffer from severe food insecurity, and only 5% of Syrian families remain secure in terms of food.

There are more than 2.4 million Syrian children who did not enroll in their schools, according to UNICEF estimates for the year 2021. Moreover, educational institutions suffer from underdevelopment and the inability to secure the basic needs of children, especially heating.

In terms of health, primary health services have declined, and more than 13.1 million people are in need of health care, according to an ESCWA report issued in 2019. This report also indicated that 15.5 million Syrians need safe sources of water.

As a result of the war operations, many Syrians were forced to migrate outside Syria, or to move to other cities inside Syria, leaving 13.2 million people without protection, and about 1.5 million homes were destroyed.

Today, it seems clearly that there is an international obstruction to the reconstruction of Syria, linking this to the implementation of Resolution 2254, which has become clear to everyone that it cannot be implemented in light of international tensions, especially after the war in Ukraine, and the suspension of nuclear negotiations with Iran. Russia and Iran are interested in a political solution in Syria, and no solution can be expected without international agreements with these two countries.

A large part of the Syrian territory is occupied by the Turkish forces, which seek to establish a buffer zone in the north of Syria, with a depth of up to 30 km inside Syrian territory.

US forces are in Syrian oil production areas, protect oil thieves and sell them outside Syria, through tanks protected from coalition aircraft, to reach Iraq and the Kurdistan region in particular, and part of it goes through the Syrian desert to the Homs refinery to secure a small part of the needs of the Syrian people in the areas controlled by the Syrian government.

Syria was producing 385,000 barrels per day before the war. According to official statistics, the SDF forces, which are protected by American forces, sell about 80,000 barrels of oil per day. The need to import oil from Iran has doubled the economic crisis in Syria, as the volume of Syrian imports from Iran is estimated at 3 million barrels of crude oil per month, with a price of up to $5 million per month. It is purchased through the “Syrian-Iranian credit line” i.e. bartering and selling them products Syrian. The same applies to gas, as the production of Syria in 2011 was 30 million cubic meters per day, but today it is less than 300,000 cubic meters per day. The shortage of oil and gas has affected the electricity, as it only on about 4 hours a day.

Northern Syria, which is called the “safe zone” is in fact – although it contains a large number of civilians – but it is a major terrorist outpost where the terrorist “Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham” (formerly Jabhat al-Nusra), led by Abu Muhammad al-Julani, is active, as well as “the organization Jund al-Sham” terrorist, a Chechen organization led by Murad Margoshvili, whose nickname is “Abu Walid the Chechen.”

As for Western sanctions against Syria, the declared goal is to bring down the Syrian government, and this will not be achieved, for what military force has failed to achieve, other means will not succeed in achieving it as well.

When economic sanctions were imposed on Iraq since 1991, they did not overthrow Saddam Hussein, and the sanctions imposed on Iran since the Islamic Revolution in 1979 did not change the Islamic rule in it. The same applies to Cuba, North Korea and other countries. Also, the political system in Syria is strong with its international alliances. Its allies did not let it down when needed, but rather supported it by all means, including military ones.

In addition to the popular base that it has, which I will not go into estimating its percentage, but the reality of the situation has made even opponents of the system rally around it, especially since the opposition was mostly extremist Islamic, with a secular group, but it is certainly weak and there is no real international support for it.

Thinking of applying democracy in the Western way is not necessarily a solution for a society that is still living in a state of narrow affiliations and loyalties, “pre-state” loyalties, where the idea of ​​citizenship has not taken root yet. Also, the neighboring democratic experiments brought Islamic currents to power in Palestine, Tunisia, Egypt…etc. We must also not forget that Hitler came to power through democratic elections.

The war in Ukraine may negatively affect the Syrian situation, in terms of declining international interest in the Syrian file, at the very least. Rather, Syria may become a card for political rivalries between the Russians and the Iranians on the one hand, and the rest of the Western countries on the other. The idea of ​​partition is rejected by all components of the Syrian people, including a large group of Syrian Kurds, and partition is not a solution to the Syrian problem.

The decline in international interest in the Syrian issue necessitates that civil organizations and political activists work to restore interest in this issue that affects millions of Syrians, and to stay away from political rivalries and false slogans, and international conferences that do not include all the parties to the crisis are conferences that will not succeed.

If the Israeli interest in the Ukraine crisis stems from the fact that there are a large number of Jews in it, and the Western interest in the Ukrainian refugee because he is a Christian, then let everyone remember that Syria is the cradle of the Christian religion, and that the Aramaic language, which is the language of Jesus Christ, is still spoken by many Aramaeans in Syria. And that the human aspect should be above all other affiliations.

The idea of ​​economic recovery that some Western countries are putting forward through some exceptions to the sanctions imposed on Syria is not a sufficient solution to the crisis. In addition, the step-by-step policy proposed by the UN envoy to Syria, Pedersen, does not appear to be an urgent policy for an envoy who may not be interested in more than the continuation of his mission for upcoming years.

I do not think that any Syrian citizen, nor any human being in the world, who is characterized by humanity can support the idea of ​​economic sanctions against Syria, unless he is connected with the political agendas of foreign countries that were party to the Syrian crisis.

The idea of ​​threatening to use force against Syria is also useless, for Syrian Defense Minister Youssef Al-Azma, who confronted the French Army when it invaded Syria in 1920, knew that he would die in front of a large and advanced army, but he refused but to die in defense of his country to prove to the world that the Syrians would not hesitate to giving their lives in defense of their country. His death has immortalized him, as the Syrians do not know the names of the defense ministers who came after him, while the statue of greatness still stands tall in the center of Damascus.

Associate Professor School of International Studies Sun Yat-Sen University/ China Professor at the Faculty of Political Science - University of Damascus (previously)

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Middle East

Iran and Sudan’s Rapprochement in 2023: New Changes in the Regional Geopolitics of the Middle East

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The Middle East is a strategic region that connects Asia, Africa, and Europe and has significant natural resources, especially oil and gas.  The Middle East is also a source of various conflicts and crises that pose threats to regional and global peace. The change in Middle East politics can shape the social and political transformations of the people and societies in the region, as well as their relations with other regions. With that, Iran and Sudan’s rapprochement has brought a new dynamic into the politics of the Middle East.  

Iran and Sudan have been allies since the 1989 coup that brought Omar al-Bashir to power, but their relations have been strained by the political and economic crisis in Sudan, the US sanctions on both countries and the regional rivalry with Saudi Arabia and Egypt. The rapprochement between Iran and Sudan in 2023 adds a new dimension to the regional geopolitics of the Middle East. It has strengthened Iran in the region, as it gained Sudan as a strategic ally and a potential gateway to Africa.

Currently in Sudan, the civil war erupted in April 2023 after a failed coup attempt by a faction of the military against the transitional government that replaced al-Bashir in 2019. The instability and conflict in both countries have affected their domestic and foreign policies. Iran has been facing internal challenges, such as protests, corruption, inflation, and environmental crises. Iran has also been involved in regional conflicts, such as the war in Yemen, the civil war in Syria, the tensions with Israel, and the nuclear standoff with the US. Sudan has been undergoing a political transition since the ouster of Omar al-Bashir in 2019, but the process has been disrupted by a military coup in October 2021. Sudan has also been dealing with humanitarian crises, such as food insecurity, displacement, and violence in Darfur and other regions.

By restoring ties with Sudan, Iran can expand its economic and political influence, as well as its access to natural resources and markets. Sudan can also serve as a counterweight to Saudi Arabia and Egypt, which have been hostile to Iran and have supported the opposition forces in Sudan’s civil war. This has challenged the Saudi-led coalition in the region, which has been trying to contain Iran and its allies. Saudi Arabia and its partners, such as the UAE, Bahrain, and Israel, have formed a bloc to counter Iran’s regional ambitions and to promote their interests. The rapprochement between Iran and Sudan can undermine their efforts and create new security threats for them. For example, Sudan can provide Iran with access to the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandeb Strait, which are vital for Saudi Arabia’s oil exports.

The change in the US outlook on the Middle East has reduced its involvement and influence in the region. The US has shifted its focus to other strategic priorities, such as countering China’s rise, addressing climate change, and dealing with domestic challenges. The US has also withdrawn its troops from Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria, and reduced its military aid and arms sales to its allies in the region. The US has also adopted a more balanced approach to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, supporting a two-state solution and restoring aid to the Palestinians. The US has also resumed negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program, which was abandoned by the previous administration. The change in the US policy has created more space for regional actors to pursue their interests and initiatives without external interference or pressure.

Iran’s interest in Sudan’s Red Sea coast is mainly driven by its strategic and economic objectives. Iran wants to strengthen its influence in the region. Iran has decided to send military support to the Sudanese army in 2023, following talks between the foreign ministers of Sudan and Iran in Baku in July. Iran wants to secure the Red Sea and the Bab al-Mandeb Strait, which are vital for its oil exports and maritime trade. Iran has been hosting its naval fleets in Port Sudan for decades, to the dismay of Saudi Arabia, which lies opposite Port Sudan on the other side of the waterway. Also, Iran wants to expand its economic and political ties with other African countries, especially with the involvement of China as a mediator. China’s role can help reduce tensions and violence in the region, as well as foster greater integration and cooperation.

The position that the rapprochement between Iran and Sudan has reduced the US leverage in the region, as it lost a key ally and a potential partner in Sudan. The US has been supporting the democratic transition in Sudan and has lifted some of the sanctions that were imposed on the country for its human rights violations and its support for terrorism. The US has also provided humanitarian and development assistance to Sudan, as well as diplomatic and military support to the transitional government. The US has hoped to use its influence in Sudan to advance its interests and values in the region, such as promoting peace and stability, countering extremism, and resolving the conflicts in South Sudan, Darfur, and Ethiopia. However, the rapprochement between Iran and Sudan can undermine these efforts and weaken the US position.

It has increased challenges for the US in the region, as it faces a more assertive and resilient Iran and its allies. Iran and Sudan have been subject to US sanctions for their alleged support for terrorism, human rights violations, and nuclear activities. The sanctions have hampered their trade and investment opportunities, as well as their ability to import essential goods and services. The US has been pursuing a dual-track policy of pressure and diplomacy with Iran over its nuclear program and its regional activities. The US has imposed severe sanctions on Iran and its proxies, such as Hezbollah, Hamas, and the Houthis, and has supported Israel’s right to defend itself against Iranian threats. The US has sought to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and to curb influence in the region. However, the rapprochement between Iran and Sudan can complicate these objectives and increase the risks of confrontation.

From a regional perspective, Saudi Arabia and its partners, such as the UAE, Bahrain, and Israel, have formed a coalition to counter Iran’s regional ambitions and promote their interests. They have also intervened militarily in Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Libya to support their proxies and allies. Saudi Arabia has also offered economic and military assistance to Sudan and other African countries, such as Djibouti and Somalia, in exchange for cutting ties with Iran. Previously, Sudan has been a major contributor to the Saudi-led coalition fighting against the Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen since 2015, but its participation has been controversial and costly for the Sudanese people.

The easing of tensions between Riyadh and Tehran has enabled Iran to restore ties with some of the Sunni-led Arab states that were previously aligned with Saudi Arabia against Iran, such as Sudan, Oman, Iraq, and Qatar. Also, it challenges the influence of UAE and Egypt in Sudan, which have been supporting the military-led transitional government since the ouster of Omar al-Bashir in 2019. The UAE and Egypt have been wary of Iran’s presence in the Red Sea and the Horn of Africa, and have sought to limit its access to ports and trade routes in the region. The Sudan-Iran rapprochement could undermine their efforts and create more competition for resources and influence in Sudan.

In conclusion, the Middle East is an arena of competition and cooperation among various regional and external powers. So, the rapprochement between Sudan and Iran has brought change in Middle East politics can alter the balance of power and interests among these actors, and create new opportunities or challenges for dialogue and partnership.

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Sisi and the “New Republic” model in Egypt

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Image source: X @narendramodi

Egypt’s participation came through President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi in the G20 meetings held in the Indian capital, New Delhi, over the course of September 9 and 10, 2023, as confirmation of what the new Egyptian Republic has achieved during the era of President “El-Sisi” at the Arab, regional and international levels, and what the new Egyptian Republic enjoys.  From a pivotal and influential role in the region as a result of the vision and efforts of President “El-Sisi” in restoring Egypt to its position on the global stage.  In addition to President Sisi’s vision of the new republic of Egypt in an attempt to re-integrate it to create balance with the new world order, and to emphasize its shift from unipolar control, to creating one world under the umbrella of “One Family… One Future”, India also chose a name and slogan for that summit.  The reason for inviting Egypt to attend the G20 summit in India comes as a result of its status among the major countries organizing the summit, as the summit includes the largest international economic and political bloc, accounting for 85% of the global economic output and 75% of the volume of global trade.  The observation worth noting remains that the differences between the major powers around the world, such as the United States of America, China and Russia, have been reflected in each party’s attempt to find new allies, by deepening the concept of a multi-power system, by creating a stronger world based on increasing the involvement of developing countries in the global economic processes, such as welcoming Egypt, the Emirates, and Ethiopia to join the BRICS economic group earlier at the G20 summit in India, in an effort to win the favor of many international parties from African and developing countries to reduce the financing gap and restructure debts that limit countries’ abilities to grow, and thus gain new allies from before. Various international powers. This was reflected in the agenda of the Egyptian leadership of President El-Sisi through understanding the mechanisms of this competition between China and the United States of America in neutralizing differences and diversifying Egypt’s economic relations with various international partners.    

  During his participation in the G20 summit in India, President  El-Sisi is trying to present (the features of the new Egyptian Republic), which were reflected in the transformation of Egypt into a leading global commercial, logistical and industrial center, thanks to the national projects that were established in the new Egyptian Republic, whether in infrastructure and ports, in addition to establishing 17 industrial cities that include thousands of new factories, in addition to encouraging the establishment of factories to provide production requirements and raw materials in the new Egyptian Republic.  Building the new republic during the era of President Sisi and promoting its most prominent features and projects confirms that Egypt is at the heart of the map of international and regional interactions, presents visions and approaches to Egypt’s economic dealings around the world at this time, and creates a kind of balance for Egypt in its relations around the world.  In addition to marketing the national economy in Egypt, and confirming the merit of the political transformation in the new Egyptian Republic, in addition to reserving a role for Egypt in the economic partnerships and international blocs that are now being formed, such as Egypt’s joining of the world’s leading BRICS group of countries immediately before the G20 summit in India.

  The conditions for holding the G20 summit internationally at the present time come in the midst of the Russian military operation in Ukraine and its effects on the shape of the international system and the Middle East, where the global order is being restructured again, as well as the architecture of the Middle East again, and it is in the interest of Egypt and the major G20 economic countries, to not be far from all these developments, and to restructure their relations in a way that allows them to benefit from all these developments.  In light of these variables, the importance of President Sisi’s participation to discuss the mechanism and ways of providing effective support from the G20 countries to developing countries to achieve sustainable development goals, to confront the negative repercussions of the Russian-Ukrainian war on the economy, food, and energy, and what it led to many successive global crises. Also, in view of the multiple regional, continental and international roles that Egypt plays and the influential and major role it has now enjoyed with all parties, the features of the Egyptian project for modernization and development through which the new republic in Egypt, led by President  “El-Sisi”, presents a model for comprehensive and sustainable development, as it adopts a multi-dimensional strategy.                   

If we analyze the final statement of the G20 Summit in India in the presence of President “El-Sisi”, we will see that it reflects the Egyptian agenda in the international action necessary to confront the challenges that the world is currently witnessing, whether on the security, military, political, economic and development levels, or the problems of hatred and discrimination and the importance of respecting the cultures and beliefs of peoples or anything related to confronting them.  Climate problems. The statement also adopted the Egyptian point of view regarding Africa’s demands and the need to support the development efforts of its people.  Knowing that the African Union has been accepted as a member of the G20, which is a major and notable qualitative development in the African march of advancement led by Egypt, under the leadership of President “El-Sisi”. This is if we focus on the speech of President “El-Sisi”, in his capacity as Chairman of the Steering Committee of Heads of State and Government of the “African Union Development Agency” (NEPAD), and his announcement of setting specific goals in consultation with African partners to support the countries of the continent, including enhancing continental economic integration, implementing the African development agenda and activating  Continental Free Trade Agreement.

 The note worth noting for me remains that President Sisi’s meetings during the G20 summit were not limited only to the leaders of the participating countries, but rather extended to the heads and representatives of international organizations and groups on various continents and those responsible for them, the most prominent of which is President Sisi’s participation in the African-European Summit.  The mini conference, which was held on the sidelines of the G20 summit.  The most important agenda put forward at the top of President Sisi’s agenda, during his participation in the summit of the Group of Twenty major economic countries, was the emphasis on strengthening Egyptian and international efforts to facilitate the integration of developing countries into the global economy in an equal manner, against the backdrop of the mutual opportunities and advantages that this provides.  It contributes to attracting investments and achieving economic growth and development for all parties.  Also, in light of Egypt’s previous hosting of the “COP27” climate summit in Sharm El-Sheikh, President “El-Sisi” will be keen to determine the extent of developed countries’ commitment to their pledges within the framework of international agreements and mechanisms to confront climate change, and to enable developing countries to increase their reliance on new and renewable energy sources. 

  Accordingly, President “El-Sisi” was keen to present the features of the new Egyptian Republic during the G20 Summit in India, which was a source of great confidence from all international partners in the strength of the Egyptian economy. This is not the result of the moment, but the result of great economic work undertaken by Egypt since years during the era of President “El-Sisi”, and it reflected positively on the increase in foreign investment inside Egypt, and on the occurrence of many successes in the field of cooperation between Egypt and major international companies, especially with the strength of the Egyptian economic situation now, as a result of the reform measures taken by the new Egyptian Republic during the era of President “El-Sisi”. Therefore, during his participation with the permanent members of the G20 in the India Summit, President “El-Sisi” was keen on a pioneering plan aimed at enhancing trade between India, Egypt and various countries of the Middle East and Europe, as it will thus link the regions that represent about a third of the global economy, which represents the pinnacle of success for the New Republic of Egypt during the era of President “El-Sisi”.

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The Surge in Saudi Arabia’s Tourism

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Saudi Arabia, a land traditionally synonymous with oil and Hajj pilgrimages, is making headlines with its burgeoning tourism sector. Over a three-month period, the kingdom witnessed a staggering inflow of 7.8 million people, generating a revenue of $9.86 billion in the first quarter of this year. This unprecedented growth has not only stimulated the Saudi economy but has also thrown a spotlight on the country’s untapped potential in sectors beyond oil.


Saudi Arabia has long been a destination for religious tourism, particularly for the Muslim pilgrimages of Hajj and Umrah. With the sacred cities of Mecca and Medina within its borders, the Kingdom has drawn millions of devout Muslims from around the world. This influx has inevitably contributed to the revenue stream, especially in sectors like hospitality, food, and travel.

Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, an ambitious blueprint for diversifying its economy, aims to reduce dependency on oil revenues and invest heavily in various sectors, including tourism. Spearheaded by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Vision 2030 encompasses transformative projects like the Red Sea Resort and NEOM, a planned $500 billion megacity. These initiatives intend to open Saudi Arabia to international tourists, attracting a demographic that goes beyond religious pilgrims.

Saudi Arabia has gradually eased its travel restrictions and visa policies to make it more tourist friendly. The introduction of the e-visa system, in particular, has made it easier for travelers to visit the Kingdom.

Economic Ramifications

The recent revenue of $9.86 billion from tourism serves as an immediate economic shot in the arm for Saudi Arabia. The numbers are impressive, especially when compared to other nations with robust tourism sectors. The surge in tourism directly translates into increased Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employment opportunities. The tourism sector has started to become a pivotal component of the Saudi economy, potentially contributing to a percentage rise in the annual GDP. The massive inflow of tourists is also expected to generate job opportunities, especially in hospitality, retail, and transport.

Saudi Arabia has recently been grappling with a fragile economic situation, exemplified by a current account deficit. The influx of tourism revenue significantly ameliorates this concern, facilitating a healthier balance of payments and boosting financial reserves. The robust earnings from tourism herald a new phase of financial diversification for Saudi Arabia. As the country reduces its dependency on oil revenues, a balanced economic portfolio incorporating tourism revenue minimizes vulnerability to global market fluctuations in the oil sector.

The surge in tourism is also a strong magnet for foreign investment. Investors are likely to see the economic uptick as a signal to invest in Saudi tourism and related sectors. Moreover, it opens doors for international collaborations and partnerships. Whether it’s in marketing strategies to promote tourism or technology transfer for sustainable practices, global partnerships are expected to enrich Saudi Arabia’s tourism landscape in multiple dimensions.

Social Impact

The tourism boom also brings a wave of cultural interchange. The conservative nation is now exposed to various global perspectives, which could be a step toward more progressive societal norms. However, this sudden rise in international exposure raises questions about the country’s cultural ethos. How will a traditionally conservative Saudi society balance its deeply rooted customs and religious norms with the more liberal attitudes of a diverse global tourist populace?

Saudi Arabia’s staggering earnings in a short period elevate it to the league of nations like the United Arab Emirates, which earned $44.4 billion in tourism. It is clear that Saudi Arabia has not only joined the tourism competition but has also managed to give some of the leading nations a run for their money.

Impact on Industries

The sheer number of tourists flocking to Saudi Arabia in such a short span undoubtedly places a considerable demand on the hospitality industry. Hotels, resorts, and other lodging options need to be ready to accommodate millions, which creates a positive ripple effect in related sectors like construction, interior design, and facility management. Moreover, there’s a corresponding need for improved public infrastructure, including roads, airports, and mass transit systems to cope with the influx of visitors.

As part of the country’s broader digital transformation goals, the Saudi government is looking at adopting smart city technologies not only for its futuristic NEOM project but also in existing cities to facilitate smooth tourism operations. This could mean the rise of app-based services that guide tourists, digital information kiosks, electronic payment gateways, and similar tech-savvy enhancements that modern travelers expect.

With a multicultural visitor base, the demand for a diverse range of food options is inevitable. This change is likely to fuel a boom in the food and beverage industry, perhaps even encouraging a more cosmopolitan culinary scene in Saudi Arabia, which is traditionally dominated by Middle Eastern cuisine.


Any surge in tourism comes with environmental ramifications, and Saudi Arabia is no exception. From pollution and waste management to natural resource consumption, the country needs to invest in sustainable practices to mitigate the environmental impact of its booming tourism sector.

Saudi Arabia is located in a geopolitically sensitive area, and thus security is a significant concern. The country will need to invest in both physical and cyber security measures to protect its visitors and its newfound economic interests.

Saudi Arabia’s astronomical rise in tourist numbers and the corresponding billions earned in revenue mark an unprecedented shift in the country’s economic and social landscape. It is a bellwether not just for Saudi Arabia but also for how countries can pivot their economies in the 21st century. The transformation from a mono-economy, dependent on fossil fuels, to a diversified portfolio that includes a burgeoning tourism sector, could serve as a model for other nations seeking to adapt and thrive in a rapidly changing global marketplace.

The next ten years will be crucial for Saudi Arabia, not only to maintain this momentum but also to address the associated challenges effectively. If managed wisely, this sea change in Saudi tourism could be a cornerstone in the country’s long-term growth and stability, fundamentally altering its role and reputation in the global arena. With strategic planning, investment in sustainable practices, and a commitment to evolving without losing sight of its cultural heritage, Saudi Arabia is well on its way to defining a new future for itself and setting a precedent for the world to follow.

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