Saudi Arabia is all set to celebrate it’s 89th National Day with fervour and the Ministry of Civil Service (MCS) has declared the 22nd and 23rd of September as public holiday making it a four-day holiday including the weekend.

 

The National Day, locally known as Al-Yaom-ul-Watany, is celebrated every year to commemorate the renaming of the Kingdom of Nejd and Hejaz to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by a royal decree from King Abdul Aziz Ibn Saud in 1932.

 

The holiday will commence by the end of working hours on Thursday, 19 September and resume on Tuesday, 24 September this year.

 

Arabian Business – 21 August 2019

https://www.arabianbusiness.com/culture-society/426189-saudis-to-get-four-day-holiday-for-national-day-celebrations

In a historic decision, Saudi Arabia announced that it will allow women to apply for and obtain passports as well as leave the country without securing the consent of a male relative.

 

The change was included in extensive amendments to laws governing travel documents, civil status, labor and social insurance approved by the cabinet this week and will become law from the end of August.

 

According to a statement from the Center for Government Communication, the new law will allow women over the age of 21 to travel independently without permission from a male “guardian”- husband, father, or other male relative, just as their male counterparts.

 

“The new regulations are history in the making,” said Kingdom’s first women ambassador to Washington Princess Reema Bint Bandar on Twitter. “They call for equal engagement of women and men in our society. It is a holistic approach to gender equality that will unquestionably create real change for Saudi women”.

 

 

Bloomberg

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-08-01/saudi-to-allow-women-to-travel-without-permission-okaz-says

The phase one construction of Saudi Arabia’s multi-billion dollar independent mega-city NEOM in the north-western region of the country is complete, and the second phase is set to be announced by the end of this year, revealed CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr while addressing a crowd of over 160 diplomats at NEOM’s first ever beach sports events held at Gayal, the site of NEOM’s first commercial airport.

 

The first phase focused on economic concept, funding and road map of the development of the giga-project, while the second phase will include detailed plans for NEOM’s sixteen economic sectors and regions.  The 26,500-square km mega city, unveiled by Crown Prince Muhammed bin Salman in 2017 will span across the coast of Red Sea and Gulf of Aqaba, spreading across Egypt and Jordan, making it the world’s first private zone to extend across three countries.

 

Backed by over $500 billion, the special zone will focus on advanced industries and technology, with robots being used for many services and power being generated solely from wind and solar energy. Pursuant to the goals of Vision 2030, the region will attract private and public investments and strive to become the most efficient destination in the world.

 

Arabian Business

https://www.arabianbusiness.com/construction/424565-first-phase-of-saudi-arabias-8bn-giga-project-neom-complete