MoU to boost palm and dates market in Saudi's AlUla

AlUla has more than 2mln palm trees, with a production that exceeds 90,000 tons of dates annually

  
A worker collects dates from a palm tree during Unaizah Season for Dates, at Unaizah city in Al-Qassim province, Saudi Arabia August 15, 2020.

A worker collects dates from a palm tree during Unaizah Season for Dates, at Unaizah city in Al-Qassim province, Saudi Arabia August 15, 2020.

REUTERS/Ahmed Yosri

AlUla: The Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the National Center for Palms and Dates (NCPD) to boost the palm and dates sector, achieve production efficiency from AlUla dates and market them locally and internationally.

The MoU included working on improving the quality of the palm and dates sector, studying the establishment of centers dedicated to providing services to farmers, and setting up workshops for farmers and others who are interested. Enabling distributors the ability to market the farms’ produce through electronic commerce was also a key point.

The signing ceremony took place at the RCU’s headquarters in Riyadh as the MoU was signed by the commission’s CEO Amr Al-Madani and the center’s CEO Mohammed Al-Nuwairan.

Under the partnership, the two parties will work to enhance their understanding in common fields, such as inviting investors and those interested in the palm and dates sector to participate in the annual AlUla Dates Festival. Presenting business models for existing facilities and services along with motivating AlUla farmers to obtain the Saudi dates mark were also included in the MoU.

AlUla has more than 2 million palm trees, with a production that exceeds 90,000 tons of dates annually. Barni dates are the most common, constituting more than 80 percent of AlUla’s production of dates, in addition to other types, such as the Mabroom and Mashrook dates.

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Marketing AlUla dates locally and internationally is a prime focus for the Royal Commission for AlUla (RCU) and National Center for Palms and Dates.

Al-Madani explained that the partnership is in line with AlUla’s vision and the goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 as both parties will promote economic diversification and empower the agricultural sector. This will result in improving the quality of life of AlUla’s residents and visitors.

“The palm and dates sector is one of the main sources of revenue for AlUla and its people,” Al-Madani said. “The MoU will constitute a focal point through what will be done in the AlUla Dates Festival during the coming period.”

Meanwhile, Al-Nuwairan said that under the partnership, the center aims to contribute to the development of the sector by supporting the production and marketing of dates and establishing dates-based food industries in AlUla.

“The AlUla farms are a qualitative production center for many types of dates, which are very popular in the local and international market,” Al-Nuwairan said. “The MoU with the commission will launch a new phase for AlUla farms and their production of dates.”

Through its work and programs in various sectors, RCU seeks to move forward in achieving AlUla’s vision and maximizing the impact on its cultural and economic development and its residents, as well as enriching the experience of its visitors.

Agriculture is one of the main economic sectors included in AlUla’s “Journey Through Time Masterplan,” which goes in line with the city’s vision to promote sustainable development by investing all available components in order to create diverse and rich sources of revenue.

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© Saudi Press Agency 2021

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