King Abdullah Economic City to Join NewCities Foundation

King Abdullah Economic City joins global corporations and research institutions to position NewCities as leading global platform on urbanization

Geneva, Switzerland – April 3, 2012 – NewCities Foundation, a global not-for-profit platform for innovation and exchange on the future of urbanization, announces the addition of King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as its newest member. KAEC, one of the world’s most ambitious new urban projects and future home to 2 million residents, is part of the Kingdom’s on-going drive to expand and diversify its economy, create employment opportunities for its young population and attract foreign investment, global trade, commerce and industry.

NewCities views King Abdullah Economic City as a critically important project since it is the first of its kind in the region and will serve as a model and catalyst for future smart cities across the world. KAEC is developed on innovative models of public-private partnerships which are is, in NewCities opinion, a core building block for creating successful and sustainable future cities. KAEC can also be an important laboratory for future cities because it will roll out new governance models, technologies and a new lifestyle which will influence the urban future in Saudi Arabia, the Middle East and globally.

The partnership between NewCities and KAEC will be highlighted at the NewCities Summit in Paris from 14-16 May 2012, where Fahd Al-Rasheed, Managing Director and CEO of KAEC, will be participating as a featured speaker.

“KAEC is one of the most ambitious and exciting urban projects anywhere,” Mathieu Lefevre, Former Executive Director of the NewCities. “It is particularly timely that KAEC joins the Foundation as we get ready to bring together global urban leaders for the NewCities Summit to shape tomorrow’s best urban practices.”

“I am therefore delighted to welcome Fahd Al-Rasheed to our line-up of high-level speakers at the Summit in May.”

Adding his comments, Fahd Al-Rasheed, said: “KAEC emanated from King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz’s vision of a socio-economic transformation for Saudi Arabia’s citizens and residents alike, through the implementation of an ambitious diversification plan, that will lead to sustained economic development and quality of life improvement for the Kingdom’s citizens for generations to come.”

“KAEC is an innovative model of public private partnerships where the private sector undertakes the development as a whole and the public sector provides the right business environment to allow these investments to flourish. As such, KAEC represents a key gateway for global companies to access markets in Saudi Arabia and the rest of the region, and we have been very successful at attracting some of the world’s best brands to the Economic City.”

“No expense is being spared to make KAEC a model for 21st century urban development and we are delighted that, as a member of  NewCities, we can share our acquired experience and expertise with our peers and engage world class partners in developing this ambitious project,” he concluded.


Press contact:
Thomas Ledwell
Director of Communications
+1 514 987 0029

About King Abdullah Economic City

  • KAEC is one of the largest and most significant economic projects run by the private sector in the Middle East. The city is 168 million square meters of land to be developed into a fully integrated city. It consists of 6 main components: the seaport, the industrial valley, the education zone, the central business district, the residential area and the resorts.
  • Economic Cities are a solid proof of the continuous efforts carried by the Saudi Government to support economic development and growth, as part of its aim to attract foreign investments and provide work opportunities for Saudi talents and encourage the foreign trade movement which in return will reflect with great benefit on various industrial, commercial and social domains in KSA.
  • Economic Cities Authority (ECA) is the main body responsible for providing financial and managerial supervision of the Saudi Economic Cities Projects. ECA plays a huge role in facilitating all processes and procedures needed by investors in terms of government relations on a 24/7 basis.

About NewCities

NewCities is an international nonprofit organization dedicated to making cities more inclusive, connected, healthy and vibrant. Focusing on people, places and policies, we bring together a global network of public and private sector leaders and Urban Tech innovators to foster results-oriented collaboration. We also produce actionable research that can be implemented by decision-makers across sectors.
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