Saudi Arabia plans to build a new media city on the outskirts of its capital. But will visa requirements and cultural intransigence thwart a bold idea?
December 17, 2009 1:02 by Sarah Abdullah
Props and studio equipment for use by any of the media companies residing in the city will also be available. The developer will construct offices and meeting rooms as well.
Also in the works is the construction of a media production institute for the purpose of employee training as well as for those interested in future work in the media production field. There will be an electronic library and other extras to aid with training for employees of international companies based at the MPC.
Although other GCC countries and nations around the world have witnessed the end of many of their own projects because of the global financial crisis, Saudi Arabia seems immune.
“Although there has been a global financial slowdown and Saudi Arabia at the beginning of the slowdown was mildly affected in its banking sector, one can clearly see that among the members of the GCC countries, Saudi Arabia has been the least affected,” a senior official from the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) told TRENDS.
The source continued by adding that Saudi Arabia was able to escape much of the financial storm by simply not having many investments tied up in tainted foreign securities.
“Instead of investing heavily in global securities like many of their GCC neighbors, Saudi Arabia chose to invest locally in real estate and infrastructure, which is now keeping the country financially healthy as well as making it feasible to go ahead with major projects,” he said.
The senior official from SAGIA said he expects that the construction will be assigned to a consortium consisting of private firms. The project will be primarily funded by local Saudi investors through the purchase of shares made available in an Initial Public Offering.