AboutHer.com Takes a Look at How Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Is Transforming the Kingdom. AboutHer.com, a lifestyle website dedicated to women living in the Arab region, has delved into the different ways Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammed Bin Salman Al Saud, is bringing his long-term vision to life. The Kingdom is clearly witnessing major changes and the website, which is described as “the definitive portal on Arab women,” has outlined the magnitude of these changes and their positive consequences.
Although he has assumed his role for less than a year, the Crown Prince already has a reputation as being a leader who takes bold and decisive action, an approach that has led to key achievements being made in a short time span. And AboutHer describes how the 32-year-old Crown Prince, also known as MBS, has guided the ambitious plan to reform Saudi Arabia’s economy and social spheres.
The website, which touches on women’s daily interests, begins with how the ruler unveiled Vision 2030, a national plan to bring economic and social change to the Kingdom and end its dependency on oil, following his ascension in June 2017. The plan aims at boosting the technology sector, changing the education curriculum, increasing women’s participation in the workforce and increasing non-oil revenue to $160 billion by 2020. Plus, there are aims to invest in other key sectors as well, such as culture, arts and entertainment, which will create much-needed jobs for the country’s youth.
AboutHer also details the key priorities that have been set by Prince Mohammed Bin Salman since revealing the plan, starting with technology. Last year, he met executives at Facebook, Microsoft and Uber during an official visit to the United States, in which the sovereign wealth fund he chairs later took a $3.5 billion stake. Since then, he has also set up a $45 billion technology investment fund with Japan’s SoftBank.
Additionally, the website explains how earlier this year, Apple and Amazon were in licensing discussions with the Kingdom. The talks are believed to be part of the Crown Prince’s push to give Saudi Arabia’s economy a more forward-thinking, high-tech dimension. The Crown Prince is currently on a tour of the United States this month as well, where he will visit San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Seattle to meet with philanthropists and leaders of the tech, defense, and entertainment companies, including Apple and Google-parent Alphabet.
The digital portal also touches on how the Crown Prince has been working on bringing the Kingdom out of a long period of ultraconservatism – one that he points out started in 1979 – towards the more moderate Islam of its past. In less than a year, he has managed to loosen or dismantle restrictions that have been in place for decades. For instance, he has rescinded the longstanding ban on public cinemas and has encouraged public performances where both women and men can attend.
Another point AboutHer highlights is the way in which the Crown Prince has been a particularly vocal and avid advocator of women’s rights in the Kingdom. The royal member has been assigning women to key leadership positions and loosening a number of restrictions such as on their movements, the way they dress and access to information and work opportunities.