Forum shines light on national urban heritage
The tourism and heritage ministers and officials heading the tourism body in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries attended 5th National Urban Heritage Forum (NUHF), which concluded Thursday. Its success reflected in the heavy turnout of the public at the forum’s exhibitions and events.
President of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH) Prince Sultan bin Salman had earlier invited them to attend the NUHF in Al-Qassim, while attending the second GCC tourism ministers meeting in Doha in October, which prepared a common strategy for the development and promotion of tourism among member states.
Among those attending the forum were Zayd bin Rashid Al-Zayani, minister of commerce and industry of Bahrain who is also in charge of tourism, Mohammed Khamis bin Hareb Al-Muhairi, director general of the National Council for Tourism and Antiquities, the United Arab of Emirates (UAE), Ahmed bin Nasir Al-Mehrizi, minister of tourism, Oman and Salim Al-Mahroge, undersecretary, ministry of heritage of Oman, an SCTNH spokesman said here.
Oman participated in the forum as a guest of honor with an exhibition on the urban heritage of Oman to highlight the Omani experience in the development and preservation of urban heritage sites, their investment and employment in different areas, he added.
The tourism minister of Yemen, Moamar Motahar Al-Eryani, and Khalid Al-Ghassani, GCC assistant secretary-general for cultural and information affairs, also attended the forum, he revealed.
The visiting GCC ministers met the SCTNH president, accompanied by Al-Qassim Gov. Prince Faisal bin Mishaal, and attended the opening ceremony of the forum as well as the awards distribution ceremony for the Prince Sultan bin Salman Award for Urban Heritage, given annually at the forum.
The members of the GCC delegations, during the events of the forum, also visited a number of heritage sites in Al-Qassim province known for its rich urban heritage and historical value.
The forum is held annually in one of the provinces in collaboration with the governorates, municipalities and local universities to celebrate the importance of urban heritage, mobilize awareness on such initiatives and discuss related issues through experts on urban heritage.
The first session of the NUHF was held in the Makkah Province; the second in the Eastern Province; the third in Madinah Province; and the fourth in Asir Province.