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Saudi Arabia offers US$133m in loans to create 50 new attractions

Saudi Arabia will provide SAR500m worth of loans to companies delivering attractions and entertainment projects
The funding will provide create at least 50 new projects
GEA has signed a memorandum of understanding with the country's Social Development Bank
The loans fit in with the overall objectives of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030 strategy

Saudi Arabia's General Entertainment Authority (GEA) has pledged to provide SAR500m (US$133m, €112m, £96m) worth of loans to companies, in order to create new attractions and entertainment projects in the country.

GEA has signed a memorandum of understanding with the country's Social Development Bank (SDB), which will see soft financing opportunities being made available to investments that contribute towards the growth and sustainability of the Saudi attractions and entertainment sector and "increase its local content".

The MoU outlines the collaboration approach between the two entities, which will see them financing "noteworthy attractions and entertainment activities" that meet applicable rules and regulations, as well as devising credit mechanisms, agreements, and performance standards.

GEA will refer eligible companies to the SDB to apply for the needed funding.

Funding for the projects chosen will be provided through SDB's Ufuq programme and will support companies through both monetary and non-monetary solutions.

The agreement also expands a list of partnerships, signed by GEA with several banks, to offer financing and varied funding solutions in support of entertainment entities.

The MoU complements a series of agreements for SDB, which aims to empower economic development opportunities by offering financial services to qualified projects from GEA.

The loans fit in with the overall objectives of Saudi Arabia's Vision 2030, which maps out the country's plans to become an 'industrial powerhouse' in a range of business sectors.

The entertainment sector is identified as a key element of Vision 2030's cultural goal – not least due to the target of increasing household spending in the sector from 2.9 per cent to 6 per cent.

Saudi Arabia  Social Development Bank  Vision 2030 
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Saudi Arabia's General Entertainment Authority (GEA) has pledged to provide SAR500m (US$133m, €112m, £96m) worth of loans to companies, in order to create new attractions and entertainment projects in the country. GEA has signed a memorandum of understanding with the country's Social Development Bank (SDB), which will see soft financing opportunities being made available to investments that contribute towards the growth and sustainability of the Saudi attractions and entertainment sector
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The entertainment sector is identified as a key element of Vision 2030's cultural goals / SHutterstock/alsanqer abdullah H
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