Saudi Neom project 'good' for Dubai and region, says Crown Prince

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman says he expects hotel deliveries in 2020-2021, with the main city to open in 2025
Saudi Arabia’s recently announced Neom city project will have a positive effect on Dubai and other cities in the region, according to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
By Bernd Debusmann Jr
Sun 29 Oct 2017 10:34 AM

Saudi Arabia’s recently announced Neom city project will have a positive effect on Dubai and other cities in the region, according to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

In an interview with Bloomberg on the sidelines of the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh last week, the Crown Prince said that Neom is “creating new demand and this will help Dubai and it will help other hubs in the Middle East.

“I don’t think Hong Kong harmed Singapore or Singapore harmed Hong Kong. They are creating good demand around each other. This zone, it’s creating new demand, not the same demand of Dubai.”

“It will help Dubai, it will help Bahrain. It will help especially Kuwait. Kuwait will export to Europe faster and cheaper than now through the pipelines and the railways to Neom, immediately to Egypt, to the north of Sinai, to Europe,” he added.

Additionally, Mohammed bin Salman noted that Neom will “have a lot of ports”, some of which will be on Saudi territory, with others in Egypt, that will also provide benefits to the other countries of the GCC, as well as Jordan, Egypt, and “lots of places in the world.”

Neom opened in 2025

When asked about the timeline of the Neom project, Mohammed bin Salman said he expected hotels to begin opening in 2020 or 2021.

“But I think the city, the main project, it will be opened in 2025,” he added. “For example, we’re working on a fast track on something we call Neom Bay. It’s not the city, it’s the bay net to the city, just to have the offices and the places to start working in the site. But when the city is completed, Neom Bay will be like the Hamptons in New York later on. So I think Neom Bay will be ready in 2021, we hope before that.”

The Crown Prince added that an airport dedicated to Neom employees was completed last month in the nearby city of Tabuk, which will most likely begin operations in 2019.

He said a second airport for the city of Neom will be completed “after 2020”.

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Last Updated: Sun 29 Oct 2017 11:32 AM GST

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