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Thu 4 Apr 2019 09:49 AM

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Saudi Arabia to give $1bn towards building 'sports city' in Iraq

Last year, Saudi Arabia pledged to pay for a 100,000 capacity stadium in Iraq

Saudi Arabia to give $1bn towards building 'sports city' in Iraq
Saudi Minister of Commerce and Investment Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qassabi with the delegation that included Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture and Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih.

King Salman of Saudi Arabia is giving Iraq a new $1 billion sports city, according to Saudi Minister of Commerce and Investment Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qassabi.

No further details about the sports city were given.

In March 2018, then-Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi said that Saudi Arabia will fund the construction of a 100,000 capacity sports stadium in Baghdad.

“[King Salman]…offered Saudi Arabia’s contribution to build a main stadium in Iraq that accommodates 100,000 people. We have welcomed the initiative and it was proposed today to the cabinet,” he said at the time.

At the time, the Iraqi cabinet was instructed to set up a task force to build the stadium, which will eclipse the 65,000 capacity stadium as Basra Sports City.

The new stadium was reported to be part of an “integrated spots city”, although no details were divulged.

The funding announcement came as a delegation of Saudi ministers travelled to Baghdad to meet with Iraqi officials on trade and investments.

In addition to Al-Qassabi, the delegation included Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture and Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih.