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In a momentous event with far-reaching potential for both countries, the People’s Republic of China has officially bestowed Approved Destination Status (ADS) upon Saudi Arabia. As reported by Wego, the development holds immense significance for Saudi Arabia’s newfound ADS status, its transformative potential for the world of travel, and the collaborative forces that have propelled this historic milestone.

Saudi Arabia has achieved a significant milestone in its tourism industry, with the official granting of Approved Destination Status (ADS) by the People’s Republic of China. The announcement came following a signing ceremony in Beijing, attended by key representatives including Abdulrahman Ahmad Al-Harbi, Ambassador of Saudi Arabia to China, Fahd Hamidaddin, Chief Executive Officer of Saudi Tourism Authority, and Du Jiang, Vice Minister of Culture and Tourism, P.R. of China.

Set to enhance connectivity between Saudi Arabia and China and open up fresh possibilities within the tourism sector, the achievement of ADS status aligns with the ongoing reinforcement of bilateral relations. This is further exemplified by successful events like the Arab-China Business Conference and the Saudi-China Roadshow earlier this year, underscoring Saudi Arabia’s dedication to becoming a vital economic and strategic partner for China.

Vice Minister Du Jiang of China’s Culture and Tourism Ministry highlighted the transformative potential of this achievement, stating that it aligns with China’s Belt and Road Initiative and Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, aimed at driving economic and social development. He further stated, “Our decades of close bilateral bond have shown that our nations share a deep appreciation for each other’s rich and diverse cultures and are committed to fostering mutual understanding and respect. ADS, with its potential to enhance people-to-people exchanges and dialogue, is a testament to this shared vision.”

The Saudi Tourism Authority also emphasized the foundation provided by ADS status which facilitates increased cooperation with partners such as GACA to enhance air connectivity. Furthermore, as part of its efforts to strengthen ties with the Chinese market, Saudi Arabia has introduced a range of Chinese-market-focused initiatives. These include streamlining visa services, introducing Chinese payment solutions such as UnionPay, initiating direct flights between Jeddah and Beijing, as well as Riyadh and Beijing, and more.