His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Public Investment Fund (PIF) has launched a new entity the Soudah Development Company (SDC) in the Asir region, to develop tourism infrastructure in the country.
The entity, fully owned by PIF, will focus on the development of a luxury mountain destination with fascinating cultural experiences, that will make the best use of the natural assets for supporting both the local as well as national economies.
SDC initiated with an aim to become a major driving force of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 ambitions will invest about $3 billion into infrastructure and tourism projects for increasing the visitor experience in Soudah and parts of Rijal Alma’a governorate. The planned developments include 2,700 hotel rooms, 1,300 residential units, and 30 commercial and entertainment attractions.
The company targets to develop Soudah and Rijal Alma’a into a year-long sustainable destination for residents and visitors that will add an estimated $8 billion to the Kingdom’s cumulative GDP by 2030. SDC is also looking forward to collaborating with the local community and private sector to build a robust network of year-long services in the hospitality, residential, commercial and entertainment sectors.
“Our investment in the Asir region reflects our confidence in the character of the location, which is a rich amalgamation of identity, heritage and experience. Through careful and considerate development, SDC will provide yet another remarkable destination in the diverse and growing portfolio of Saudi Arabian experiences capturing the imagination of a broad range of investors and travelers.”
SDC is targeting to bring more than 2 million visitors annually, particularly aiming at adventure-seekers and culture travelers who are looking for one-off experiences. The company also forecasts to create 8,000 direct and indirect permanent jobs by 2030.
As per reports, the sovereign wealth fund of the kingdom will invest nearly $40 billion a year into the local economy and aims to widen assets under management to more than $2 trillion by 2030.
With the development of the new destination, Saudi Arabia’s ambitious tourism goals will get a new dimension and complement other projects on the Red Sea coast and around the capital city of Riyadh.
SDC aims to create a roadmap to transform the region’s vast public areas to highlight the region’s distinct culture, geography and green nature. Preserving the environmental integrity of the destination will be a priority and the development will follow a strict regulatory framework and urban planning code.