Yes, Saudi Arabia is all set to Re-Open Cinema Halls in the Islamic Republic from 2018, nearly after a gap of 35 years!
After allowing women to enter the sports stadium from 2018, Saudi Arabian government has also granted permission to reopen of the commercial cinema halls in the Islamic country from next year.
Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Culture and Information has announced that commercial cinemas will be allowed to operate in the Kingdom from March 2018. Cinema Halls were closed in Saudi Arabia since 35 years.
Meanwhile, the resolution to grant licenses to the cinema halls from early 2018 was passed by the Board of the General Commission for Audiovisual Media (GCAM). The GCAM is chaired by Awwad Alawwad, the Minister of Culture and Information.
Cinema Halls in Saudi Arabia to Re-Open from March
In a released statement, Alawwad said: “As the industry regulator, the General Commission for Audiovisual Media has started the process for licensing cinema halls in the Kingdom. We expect the first cinema hall to open in March 2018.”
Saudi Arabian government is trying its level best to accomplish its Vision 2030 as part of the social and economic reforms in the Kingdom. The opening of Cinema Halls in Saudi Arabia follows the granting the permission to women in the Kingdom to drive from June 2018.
The move marks the first time that cinema halls have been permitted to operate in the country since the early 1980s. “This marks a watershed moment in the development of the cultural economy in the Kingdom,” Alawwad added in the statement.
“Opening cinema halls will act as a catalyst for economic growth and diversification; by developing the broader cultural sector we will create new employment and training opportunities, as well as enriching the Kingdom’s entertainment options.”
According to authorities, Vision 2030 aims to increase Saudi household spending on cultural and entertainment activities from 2.9% to 6% by 2030. The announcement opens up a domestic market of more than 32 million people and it is forecast that, by 2030, Saudi Arabia will be home to more than 300 cinema halls, according to the Board of the General Commission for Audiovisual Media.