85% of Saudi residents agree the move towards a green economy is important for the future of the Kingdom. That’s according to research released from the Serco Institute, which highlights that the vast majority of people living in the country view the Kingdom’s green transition as ‘very’ important or important.
The Institute’s research, conducted in conjunction with the polling agency Kantar and covering over 1,000 adults aged 18-54 living in Saudi Arabia, firmly establishes the depth of public support in the Kingdom for the reforms of Vision 2030. Indeed, this polling research shows that a still higher proportion (88%) of Saudis support one of the broader aims of Vision 2030: to diversify the Kingdom’s economy and transition away from oil revenues.
Sustainability is central to Vision 2030 and the Saudi Government’s ambitions: the Kingdom aims to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2060, with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman having committed over $180bn (£130bn) towards net zero in 2021.
Saudi policymakers have found an innovative way to marry their sustainability drive with another key pillar of the Vision 2030 agenda: tourism. The Kingdom’s vast giga-projects, in particular Red Sea Global in the country’s west, have sought to emphasise sustainable tourism, offering a green luxury holiday destination on the shores of the Red Sea.
In support of the visionary project, Serco has been appointed as the managing agent for the full suite of sustainable mobility services at The Red Sea, delivering a world-class, net-zero mobility experience for guests visiting the development.
Commenting on the project and Saudi’s ambitious plans to move towards a green economy, Phil Malem, CEO of Serco Middle East, comments: “This landmark partnership for our transport operations in Saudi will create new roles in the Kingdom and is very much aligned with our company purpose of bringing national visions to life. Our global experience in mobility operations, coupled with the huge ambitions for The Red Sea, means guests will enjoy an incredible experience throughout their entire journey. Through giga projects, such as this one, Saudi is pushing exciting boundaries in the use of innovations, technology and international best practices to deliver the best possible customer experiences.”
Supporting this, further research from Serco Institute shows that over half of Saudi residents (55%) agree that ‘tourism or leisure’ is either the first or second most promising economic sector for the KSA economy.
This placed the tourism and hospitality industry as the sector most viewed as having potential for the Saudi economy by the people of Saudi Arabia itself, suggesting citizens are very much in favour of their government’s decision to designate tourism as a central pillar of their Vision 2030 programme.
Ben O’Keeffe, Deputy Director, Serco Institute, comments: “From green electricity generation to sustainable mobility, Saudi is aiming to be a global reference point for how to develop a region sustainably, in a low-carbon manner and with minimal impact on the environment. Importantly, our polling shows that this is exactly the direction of travel Saudi residents want to see.
“To help accelerate these projects, such as the Red Sea Project, the private sector has a critical role to play. From supporting with renewable energy provision, utility infrastructures or green mobility services, the private sector needs to continue to work hand in hand with the government to harness its capabilities and expertise in the fight against climate change.
“Combining their ambition with the expertise and know-how of private sector organisations and an investment in human capital, KSA giga-projects have a winning formula to unlock the Kingdom’s full economic potential and achieve the goals set out in Vision 2030. It is through doing so that the Kingdom of Saudi will realise its ambitious Vision 2030 plans, and will become a world leader in sustainability,” Ben added.