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Thu 3 Jan 2008 11:14 AM

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Jafza to operate Saudi economic city

Dubai free zone operator signs deal with Rakisa for $8bn Prince Abdul Aziz bin Mousaed Economic City.

Dubai free zone operator Jafza International is to develop and manage what will be Saudi Arabia's second largest economic city, the company announced on Wednesday.

Jafza, part of state-owned conglomerate Dubai World, on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with lead developer Rakisa Holding Company for the $8 billion Prince Abdul Aziz bin Mousaed Economic City, one of four mega-cities being developed in the kingdom.

Under the agreement, both parties will explore investment opportunities to jointly develop the city, also known as Rakisa Economic City.

Spread over 15,600 hectares, the development is being designed as a transportation and logistical and will include an international airport, dry port, railway station, agricultural industries and services, and a mining centre.

The city, located in Hail, will also include a business centre, residential complexes and entertainment areas.

It will eventually house more than 300,000 people and provide 55,000 jobs in seven phases of development over the next 40 years.

Saudi is also developing King Abdullah Economic City in Rabigh, Knowledge Economic city in Madinah and Jizan Economic City.

Local media reported last month that Saudi Arabia is planning to launch two new economic cities this year.

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