- The Media Line - https://themedialine.org -

Mega Mecca

Saudi Arabia’s legislature has approved plans to build an international airport outside Islam’s holiest city in an effort to cater to more than two million pilgrims who visit the city each year. The Shura Counci, Saudi Arabia’s advisory legislature appointed by the king, unanimously approved the airport. It was part of a proposal in the General Authority for Civil Aviation’s annual report to the body. Since only Muslims are permitted to enter Mecca, the council recommended that the new airport be located outside the city center, so as to allow both Muslims and non-Muslims to fly into the region. The new airport is part of a Saudi government decision to end decades of underinvestment by allocating tens of billions of dollars to improve the kindgdom’s transportation infrastructure so more Muslim tourists vacation there and spur the economy. "You have two types of growing aviation economies in the Middle East," Philip Butterworth-Hayes, an aviation expert and the editorial director of PMi-Media Ltd, told The Media Line. "There are those based on domestic demand and those based on international demand. Saudi Arabia has always had a huge domestic potential aviation sector which has not yet been fully realized. If you look at the potential number of business jet operators and first class passengers, the potential growth is enormous."
http://www.themedialine.org/news/news_detail.asp?NewsID=28678 [1]