Saudi “NEOM” seeks to attract Chinese investors

Saudi Arabia – Those in charge of the “NEOM” city, which Saudi Arabia is building in its desert overlooking the Red Sea, conducted a dedicated tour in China to attract investors, during which they presented the broad outlines of the expensive project.

After those in charge of the future project passed through Beijing and Shanghai, they spent two days in Hong Kong, and made a major presentation of NEOM’s plans to potential investors.

NEOM’s Executive Director of Urban Planning, Tariq Al-Qaddoumi, said in a press statement, during a visit to an exhibition dedicated to the project at the M+ Museum in Hong Kong, that “the company aims to achieve a balance between “protecting nature, human livability, and economic prosperity.”

He added: “NEOM has a very broad vision. It is probably the most exciting and most forward-looking initiative of the twenty-first century.”

No major agreement was announced during this round.

For his part, President of the Hong Kong Innovative Technology Development Association, Leonard Chan, said that the exhibition contributed to making “NEOM” “less mysterious,” and the reactions of guests at the reception dedicated to the project were “fairly neutral.”

But Chan stressed that he is “not ready to live in the most prominent building in the project, “The Line,” which is a design with two mirrored facades that is supposed to extend over 170 kilometers in the desert, with a height of 500 meters and a width of 200 meters.

He told Agence France-Presse: “I will visit it for fun, but I will not live there. It is like living in the electronic (game) Sim City” for building virtual cities.

He added, “If I lived there, I might not want to leave. It’s like being isolated from the world and I can’t bear it.”

NEOM’s administrators also toured Europe and the United States in search of investors.

The “NEOM” city project is being built in parallel with other huge projects within the framework of an ambitious economic and social reform plan known as “Vision 2030” that aims to diversify the Kingdom’s oil-dependent economy, in preparation for the post-fossil fuel era.

The giant project, launched by the Saudi Crown Prince, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, in 2017, at a cost of $500 billion, will include a ski resort and a building 170 km long and 500 meters high.

Source: AFP

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2024-04-23 19:48:34

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