The ‘Land of the Two Holy Mosques’, and the largest country in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, has now scrapped most of its entry requirements, making travel more accessible and more comfortable.
This comes as a natural progression as Saudi Arabia is sticking to its commitment to revamp its image as an oil-dependent country. Grab a flight ticket to travel to the KSA next year, and there’ll be a lot to expect on the ground: the launch of a new national airline, new destinations at its futuristic city-project NEOM, cool international events, among others.
In another move to rebrand and future-proof its economy, Saudi Arabia is also looking to boost its national and regional climate action. This is primarily done through committing to the Middle East Green Initiative, a key projects of the country’s Vision 2030.
Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy Prince Abdulaziz Bin Salman launched three new climate-based projects and a greenhouse gas credit scheme at the second Saudi Arabia Green Initiative Forum held in tandem with COP27:
Circular Carbon Economy Knowledge Hub – As a part of the Kingdom’s commitment to the Middle East Green Initiative, Saudi Arabia is launching the Circular Carbon Economy Knowledge Hub to facilitate regional collaboration in CCE technologies. The hub will also share information, best practices and learnings that will support the region-wide implementation of NDCs, helping achieve the ambitious targets set under the Middle East Green Initiative.
MENA Climate Week 2023 – The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is working with the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change to host the next MENA Climate Week in 2023. Set to take place in the run-up to COP28 in the UAE, the event will bring together key regional and global stakeholders to explore challenges and opportunities, showcase innovation and solutions and advance climate actions.
Regional Centre to Advance Emissions Reduction – Saudi Arabia will also work with the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia to establish a Regional Center to Advance Emissions Reduction. Besides providing opportunities for regional collaboration to accelerate emissions reduction and facilitate the implementation of the CCE, the centre will also be a powerful platform representing regional voices, influencing global narratives and developing a road map to lower emissions.
Moreover, commenting on the Kingdom’s climate initiatives and approach to cross-border collaboration, the Saudi envoy for climate affairs, stated that the Kingdom’s main objective behind the Middle East Green Initiative is to plant up to 50 billion trees in the Middle East.
The authorities have also announced funding of $2.5 billion to support the activities of the initiative and to make sure the Kingdom deals with desertification and with planting trees to reduce carbon in the environment.