JEDDAH — Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah said that the ministry is carrying out studies with regard to linking electronic payment systems for pilgrims with the systems that are in force in the Kingdom. The move will coincide with the increase in the number of pilgrims over the coming years, he said.

The minister made the remarks while opening the annual Creative Makers Forum, organized by the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah. The ministry held the annual ceremony on Monday to celebrate the first group of graduates from the business accelerator program, organized in partnership with the Saudi National Bank. The ceremony was held under the theme of “Change, impact and sustainability,” in line with the ministry’s efforts to promote a culture of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. The ceremony showcased 20 startups and creative projects.

Al-Rabiah highlighted the ministry’s keenness on making available excellent services in several fields, including technical or non-technical, such as the challenge of electronic payment service. “Many countries have special electronic systems. However, when their pilgrims come to the Kingdom, they cannot use the systems that they have, and they cannot use our systems too,” he pointed.

Al-Rabiah said the ministry supports the creative ideas presented by young men and women so as to extend the best ever services for the pilgrims. “We are working to encourage them, praising the role of the private sector as a major partner in providing distinguished services and better facilities for the pilgrims,” he added.

In her speech, Maryam Kutob, director general of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center at the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah, said: “Today we celebrate the graduation of ten startups that have been incubated to accelerate business in partnership with the private sector, as well as 10 Ambassadors of Ceativity with creative projects that dealt with 10 challenges in the Hajj and Umrah system.”

The ceremony witnessed honoring the distinguished and creative participants in the programs of the Creativity and Entrepreneurship Center.

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