Samsung Group will join an entertainment megaproject, “Qiddiya,” which will be built in Saudi Arabia. Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong has been focusing more on finding opportunities in the Middle East, meeting with Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman three times this year, and it seems that his efforts have paid off.
Industry experts and foreign news media said Tuesday that Samsung C&T Corporation will sign an MOU for the project in the Future Investment Initiative held at Ritz-Carlton in the Saudi capital Riyadh on Tuesday and Wednesday (local time). The management of the company including CEO Lee Young-ho will attend the event on behalf of the vice chairman who is facing a bribery trial.
Qiddiya is a project to build a mega entertainment complex in a desert 45 kilometers south-west (a 40-minute ride) of Riyadh. Covering an area of 334 square kilometers, the complex is more than half the size of Seoul (605 square kilometers). The Saudi government will invest a total of 8 billion dollars with the aim of completing the first phase by 2022 and the entire project by 2030. Once completed, the complex is expected to attract 17 million tourists and hire 25,000 employees.
The complex will be divided into five zones with the resort at the center, which will feature a hotel, an outdoor entertainment facility, a motorsports center, a speed park stadium and an indoor ski center. At the north-west part of the complex will be an eco zone comprising a wild animal park and a golf course.
Vice Chairman Lee has emphasized that the Middle East is a land of opportunities in the 21st century in a series of meetings with top personnel in the region including Saudi Arabia’s. In June, he invited Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman to a supper with the heads of Korea’s top five companies at Seungjiwon, the guest house of Samsung Group.
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