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SUSTAINABLE URBANISATION

Saudi Arabia unveils $92bn investment plan for Expo 2030

RIYADH, December 4, 2023

Saudi Arabia is set to spend nearly $92 billion for its mega Expo 2030 event in Riyadh, which it aims to transform into one of the most sustainable cities through massive initiatives - such as the King Salman Park Initiative and Saudi Green Initiative (SGI) as well as decarbonisation of the urban transport - within the next seven years, said a top official.
 
Princess Haifa bint Mohammed Al Saud, the Vice Minister of Tourism, was speaking during the third edition of the Saudi Green Initiative (SGI) Forum which opened today (December 4) on the sidelines of COP28 expo.
 
Senior Saudi officials took to the stage to discuss the kingdom’s sustainable urbanisation progress.
 
Under the SGI, more than 43 million trees and shrubs have been planted across the kingdom since it was set up in 2021 and also 94,000 hectares of degraded land (equivalent to 146,000 football fields) have been rehabilitated across the kingdom.
 
In capital Riyadh alone, more than 92,000 trees and shrubs were planted this year in the Qurtubah neighbourhood as part of the Green Riyadh project, including locations such as schools, mosques, and government buildings.
 
Emphasising the role of sustainable urban development for cities, Princess Haifa said plans are afoot to transform Riyadh into one of the most sustainable cities by 2030 in time for the mega event through a range of key initiatives. 
 
"One of those ways is to have more green spaces, and it’s the King Salman Park Initiative that we are going to develop in the middle of the city to enhance and create that," she stated.
 
In his address, Saleh Al Jasser, Minister of Transportation, Saudi Arabia, highlighted some of actions being undertaken across the kingdom to decarbonise urban transport. 
 
"We are implementing remote work in government agencies, which helps reduce demand for daily travel," he stated. 
 
"To shift to less carbon intensive modes of transport, we have set ambitious targets to increase the share of public transport, with the Riyadh bus and metro projects well underway," said Al Jasser.
 
Saudi Arabia is among the first few countries to participate in carbon offsetting and reduction schemes for international aviation, he added.-TradeArabia News Service



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