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Cinema Build KSA forum in Riyadh to take place on 14 April

The government of Saudi Arabia intends to invest $35bn into its culture and leisure sector by 2020. The move is part of the Kingdom’s effort to create a ‘true cultural community to enjoy theatres and cinemas’.

The investments are part of a bid to ensure that Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam become among the top 100 cities in the world for providing Quality of Life (QOL). QOL is a a programme which aims to develop and diversify entertainment opportunities to meet the needs of the population, and develop the Saudi contribution in both arts and culture.

In the Kingdom, the programme will be responsible for an increase in the number of out-of-home entertainment venues from 154 to 260 by 2020. It also aims to raise the available retail space in shopping malls from 0.15 to 0.19sqm per capita, according to a statement.

The announcement was made ahead of the forthcoming Cinema Build KSA forum in Riyadh. The forum plans to lead the country’s cinema industry by bringing together key stakeholders across the design and construction & technology sectors, to discuss the latest trends and techniques of building world-class cinemas.

According to experts, the Kingdom’s decision to lift the 35-year ban on cinemas in December 2017 has opened opportunities for international and regional companies to help develop the domestic entertainment industry.

Saudi General Commission for Audiovisual Media (GCAM) CEO Bader Alzahrani said, “The cinema sector in Saudi Arabia will see significant growth, especially with GCAM’s continuous efforts to facilitate and promote national and foreign investment to enter the sector. At the same time, GCAM is working toward achieving Quality of Life programme’s goal by opening 45 cinemas by 2020, with emphasis on providing various different entertainment opportunities for everyone, which will enhance and contribute to diversifying the economy.”

Source: ME Construction News, By Jason Saundalkar