Following the SBJBC’s biannual meeting in Riyadh on 1 December, delegates visited Jeddah Chamber of Commerce for discussions on SME cooperation, and King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) in Rabigh. They were received at KAEC by Rowan Kelly, Head of Business Development, who explained that Phase 1 of the industrial zone is already 95% committed, and that the new deepwater container port has already handled 1 mil containers (TEU) in its first year of operation, with eventual capacity for 20 mil containers.
Construction of the new high speed Haramain rail line linking KAEC with Mecca and Medina was also making good progress, and bring Jeddah within 30 mins journey time when operational in 2017. KAEC would also be linked with Riyadh and Dammam through the cross-country Landbridge rail line under development.
Delegates expressed keen interest in the single window investment licensing regime administered by the Economic Cities Authority at KAEC, and toured the impressive residential, leisure and industrial zones being developed in the 181 mil sq metre site.