Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammad bin Salman unveiled “Riyadh Air,” the country’s new national airline, on Sunday. “Riyadh Air” is a company owned by the Public Investment Fund, which is a part of the government (PIF).
Arab News says that the new national airline will take advantage of Saudi Arabia’s strategic location between Asia, Africa, and Europe. This will make Riyadh a gateway to the world and a global hub for transportation, trade, and tourism.
Daily Trust says that after Saudia, Riyadh Air would be the second national airline.
It comes at a time when Nigeria is having trouble getting its national airline, Nigeria Air, off the ground. This is because the federal government’s shareholding plan gives Ethiopian Airlines control of the airline.
Riyadh Air, on the other hand, would be completely owned by Saudi Arabia. It would be funded by the country’s sovereign wealth fund, or PIF, which is one of the largest in the world and is worth an estimated US$620 billion (£514 billion).
Reports say that Yasir Al-Rumayyan, Governor of PIF, will be in charge of Riyadh Air. Tony Douglas, who has worked in the aviation, transportation, and logistics industries for more than 40 years, has been named CEO.
The top leaders of the airline will have both Saudi and international experience.
With Riyadh as its hub, the airline will usher in a new era for the travel and aviation industries around the world. It will do this by adopting the world’s best standards for safety and sustainability across its advanced fleet of planes, which are all outfitted with the most cutting-edge technology.
A statement said that the airline is expected to add $20 billion to the growth of non-oil GDP and create more than 200,000 direct and indirect jobs.
As a PIF subsidiary that is owned by PIF in its entirety, the new national airline will be able to use PIF’s investment expertise and financial resources to grow and become a leading national carrier.
Along with the recently announced King Salman International Airport masterplan, the new national airline is the latest investment made by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) in the sector.
Riyadh Air wants to improve its customers’ trips and connect them to more than 100 destinations around the world by 2030. It plans to do this by giving customers a unique experience based on authentic, warm Saudi hospitality.
Saudi Tourism Minister Ahmed Al-Khateeb said on Twitter that the new airline is a “major breakthrough” that will give a big boost to the tourism industry in the Kingdom.
He said that starting the airline helps them reach their goal of having 100 million tourists from all over the world visit by 2030.
It will make Saudi Arabia’s aviation ecosystem more financially stable and help the industry be more competitive around the world, which is in line with Vision 2030.