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Tue 8 May 2007 02:57 PM

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King Abdullah tours northern Saudi

The King embarks on a tour to initiate several economic regeneration projects in northern kingdom.

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah is touring the north of the country with a mission to jumpstart economic development in the region.

During the tour, the king will give his blessing to a number of industrial and development projects worth several billion dollars.

He will lay the foundation stone of a new university and science college in Arar and will also initiate the building of a community college in Rafha. Both cities will also receive funding for colleges of technology and vocational training.

The king is then expected to lay the foundation stone for a number of water and electricity projects worth SR2.4 billion, including a potable water pipeline from Basitaa to Turaif and a SR138 million water purification plant in Arar. He will open the Rafha-Arar Road (SR410.54 million) and lay the stone for Arar-Turaif Road, according to an Arab News report.

Northern Saudi Arabia is witnessing a boom in development projects this year. Last week Arabianbusiness.com reported the launch of a project to build a $1.5 billion causeway between the Sinai region of Egypt, close to the Sharm el-Sheikh resort town, to the northwest of Saudi Arabia near Ras el-Sheikh Humayd.

An economic city is also being built at the Saudi Arabian end of the causeway.

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