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Saudi Arabia celebrates its National Day

Air shows, military parades and cultural events pay tribute to Saudi Arabia's 92nd National Day as the country celebrates its golden era
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PHOTO/ARCHIVO  -   Flag of Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia has much to celebrate this Friday 23 September. Since King Abdulaziz bin Saud unified the Kingdom of Nejad and Hijad into the modern Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1932, the country has become one of the largest economies in the Gulf and one of the leading global economies. So the commemoration of this bank holidays comes at a momentous time in the nation's history for the transformation and development it fosters.

Activities are planned throughout the country to commemorate this National Day, although the capital, Riyadh, will host the biggest celebrations. The Royal Guard will perform a parade to the rhythm of the national anthem, while the Royal Saudi Air Force will stage an aerobatic display of fighter and military aircraft in what is expected to be the largest air show in the country's history.

In addition to the military displays, the Saudi government has prepared major cultural and heritage activities under the theme 'the pride of the nation'. Music, fireworks, interactive festivals and the Cirque du Soleil will showcase the richness of the country.

To host the event, all the streets of the capital and the main buildings have been decorated with green national flags, while the country's more than 34 million inhabitants are preparing to celebrate this important date.

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PHOTO/REUTERS - Kingdom Centre Tower in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Arab leaders have also used the occasion to express their best wishes for Saudi Arabia. "We have much love in our hearts for the Kingdom and its people," said UAE Vice President and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. "God willing, our present and our future will be together forever," added the sheikh, expressing the UAE's pride in its ties with Saudi Arabia. Kuwait's Amir Sheikh Nawaf al Ahmad al-Sabah and Oman's Sultan Haitham bin Tariq al Said also sent their congratulations.

Several Saudi media outlets and news portals are commemorating National Day by briefly reviewing the history of Saudi Arabia and the seven monarchs who have reigned in the kingdom since the unification of the kingdom under King Abdulaziz bin Saud in 1932 until the current leadership of King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

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PHOTO/FILE - Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

During this period, Saudi Arabia has undergone unprecedented development and has managed to become the country with the largest economy of all the Gulf countries, with 1,040 million dollars, ahead of the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Kuwait, and one of the main global economies. The increase in crude oil prices and demand in Saudi Arabia, the main producer of hydrocarbons, has led it to economically surpass countries such as Russia and Brazil. In fact, GDP is expected to grow by 7.5% in 2022, the highest rate of increase in the last 10 years.

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PHOTO/ATALAYAR - Infographic showing the share of each of the Gulf economies (Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain) in the total wealth of the region in 2022

The promotion of renewable energies, self-sufficiency and the development of new technologies are also a key element in the Saudi Arabia of recent years, which the world is watching closely. Just this Thursday, the Saudi Space Commission announced that it will send its own astronauts into space by 2023.

A development that places Saudi Arabia in the current geopolitical spotlight. This weekend, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will meet with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman as part of his Gulf tour, which will focus on gas supplies. Bin Salman also spoke with US President Joe Biden and French President Emmanuel Macron on his recent visit to Paris, forging political ties on the current international stage.