Modernism along with mannerism seems to be the motto and name of the era through which Saudi Arabia is going through these days. With a young crown prince in charge, lots of much & well-awaited changes are being observed, not only in papers but also on the ground.
Since the time King Salman issued a royal decree of selecting Prince Muhammad bin Salman as the new crown prince, a lot has been happening.
The 32-year-old crown prince is the son and heir of King Salman, and with all the needed support, he has been doing a marvelous job, defying the norms and conventional type of ruling, changing the mindset of the people living abroad about the Kingdom which always has been seen as a conservative land.
6 major history changing steps were taken in 2017 and the Kingdom is moving into 2018 with the wish that more history changing steps will be taken soon.
1-Women driving: This was indeed a great opportunity for Saudi women and a huge change in the Kingdom. On September 2017, King Salman issued a Royal decree to allow women to drive.
In June 2018 the Kingdom has planned to issue a license to women, even allowing them to drive motorcycles.
2-Movie theatres return: Movie theatres were closed in 1,980 and finally, it was decided in 2017 that soon all the cinemas will re-open almost after 37 years.
The theatres are expected to be opened in March 2018. This is indeed giving another way of recreation and entertainment for Saudi’s families to enjoy and kill their time.
3-Concerts and Comic-Con: Saudi Arabia held two major Comic-Con events in 2017, where thousands of fans dressed up in their action hero costumes. Rapper Nelly and two famous stars of Games of Thrones visited Saudi Arabia.
Moreover, entertainment drive started in the Kingdom, and the all-male concert was held where singer Mohammad Adbu performed who had not performed since 1980.
4-Tourist Visas: Saudi Arabia is going to offer Tourist Visa to Saudi Arabia from the upcoming year. It is a major and most awaited step taken by the Saudi government.
Personally, I always believed that Saudi Arabia has much more to offer to the world apart from its Oil. The natural beauty of Saudi Arabia is yet to be explored.
The size of NEOM project will be four times the size of Dubai, Beirut, Cairo, and Amman combined. It will create endless job opportunities for expatriates and Saudis.
6-Anti Corruption Campaign: In 2017, King Salman issued a Royal Decree creating an anti-corruption committee. The committee took an immediate action and 11 Princes were arrested on the same day for the corruption charges.
It is a great initiative by King Salman to convey a message to everyone that no one is above law in Saudi Arabia. Personally speaking, it is important too. If you want your country to grow, you need to eradicate corruption.
7-A Historic Trump Visit: After Barak Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, the terms between the two countries were getting cold, however, President Trump’s visit and deals on arms and joining in the traditional ceremonies were a gesture of good future relations.
President Choose Saudi Arabia as the first stop in his first overseas tour as a president. The main focus of this visit was an Arab-Islamic-American Meeting, which drew heads of state to the Saudi capital for Trump’s speech to Muslim world leaders.
8-New Heir to the throne: Prince Mohammad bin Naif was replaced and Mohammad bin Salman was appointed as a new crown Price, this was announced by the Saudi Press agency on June 21.
From the much awaited and business boosting gesture of issuing tourist visas to utmost required decision of women being given permission to acquire driving license, all of the steps were not only welcomed and cheered, but also came as a ray of hope for the youngsters who were feeling left out and way back from rest of the world.
Source: Arab News