Reuters: declining economic activity for the pilgrimage season .. did the absence of the Iranians?

BAGHDAD / Follow-up: coincided height of the expansion in the Grand Mosque in Mecca with the security and economic unrest in the Middle East resulting in the decline in the number of pilgrims this year and had a negative impact on economic activity for the pilgrimage season, which depends upon many as their primary source of income throughout the year.
Chairman of the National Committee for Haj and Umrah and member of the Chamber of Commerce in Mecca Marwan Abbas Shaban, "says economic activity numbers vary from year to year depending on the number of pilgrims and purchasing power when the people by nationality, but today is not at the top grades. "His last three years, a reduction in the number of pilgrims due to the expansion of the Two Holy Mosques up and processing the massive infrastructure that you need some time to finish circumstances. Talking about the decline in the last three years for the years before." But he predicted that accompanies "The next pilgrimage seasons growth as a result of the infrastructure of some of the projects and to increase the number of pilgrims after the end of the current reduction is complete, which is 20 percent of the pilgrims abroad and 50 percent of the pilgrims inside." He pointed out that the analyzes according to the vision of the Kingdom in 2030 suggest that the pilgrimage revenues will amount to 47 billion Saudi riyals expected to "Tbachireha show of 2020". His decline in the number of pilgrims relative stagnation in economic activity as a result of what he described as Shaban as a "political conditions in some countries and economic conditions," expected decline in revenue from last Hajj season normally three years ago did not resemble any internal or external force majeure "50 percent" and the estimated value about "four or five billion riyals." In turn, said the Secretary of the city of Mecca Osama al-Bar that "there is definitely an impact on economic sectors." "The economic side is always worrying, but along to the private sector and investments in Mecca is very large. For example, in the area of ​​housing there is a huge project is the Jabal Omar project hotels entered including 12 five-star hotel in the service and the rest are still under construction and with the completion provides 30 hotels within meters from the Grand mosque. " The bar and pointed out that "currently the proceeds of the private sector of the Hajj season is an average of 60 billion riyals, the equivalent of US $ 17 billion and if we add to logistics and material living may be in the range of 100 billion riyals profits. This is the estimated yield, but large investments .. . much larger. " The bar and explained that already in Mecca "accommodate hotel capacity of three million bed," he said. "Upon completion of the development of the holy sites ... it may kingdom accommodate 3.7 million pilgrims in 2020 and 6.7 million by the year 2042." Iranian pilgrims Missed the Iranians for the pilgrimage this year due to the diplomatic crisis between Tehran and Riyadh. And the economic impact of the absence of Iranian pilgrims, said Shaaban "Mecca affected by any absence. Iranian Hajj is incremented ranged numbers between 70 or 80 thousand, but they affect only certain areas of housing and other types of goods and services they require, but in the end do not make up more than six or seven percent of the pilgrims and their absence may be compensated from other countries. but that does not prevent today in Mecca lose sight of the Iranian Hajj and it hurts a little as it does not wish to miss. " Shaaban said "Hajj is not only trade but also a mixture, cultures, customs and Iranian Hajj part of the pilgrimage does not appreciate the fact that we deny." * Activate the economic movement Chamber of Commerce began in Mecca in the recent period visualize ways of activating economic and trade movement in Mecca during the remaining period until the completion of the development of the holy sites. And approved for this purpose a number of projects and the other is still under study and some actually went into effect. And working economic system in Mecca throughout the year depending on the Hajj and Umrah seasons and the Chamber of Commerce aims to revitalize the economic wheel across the shopping and the accompanying events such as the Islamic conferences and other festivals. Shaaban announced the signing of the Mecca Chamber of the first agreement in the UK with Alibaba platform Chinese e-commerce as well as a permanent exhibition center of the room is equipped to become the Mecca exhibition always Industries. Shaaban announced a project sponsored by the room is a project "Made in Mecca." "We are trying to involve in the project every Meccan society groups such as artisans and factories and our goal that all Haj needed in the markets is to be a Makiya industry." * Rising prices Reported local media reports of complaints rise of various commodities and luxuries prices in the surrounding Haram Makki markets amid criticism from prominent theologians from the exploitation of the pilgrimage in activities aimed at profiteering. Newspaper Okaz daily cited a report which quoted a member of Senior Ulema, Sheikh Abdullah Bin Sulaiman Al Manea displeasure of the large number of private commercial advertising, including so-called "pilgrimage allowance," which reaches its prices to the high amounts and the exploitation of people's need for Hajj and turn it into a commercial activity. Pilgrimage to the allowance is assigned to a person pilgrimage for people unable healthy or physically to perform the rituals in person or dead. Manea said the newspaper "should not be the subject of worship Hajj trade or Astrabah and acquisition." Egyptian Shaimaa complained that the pilgrimage with her husband this year from currency exchange rate differential, making the commodity prices are high fantastically for her. She said Shaima "riyal equals three pounds and a half. Price expensive three and a half times for everything." "The commercial and food commodities are very expensive even Balah very expensive small him Valalbh price of 35 riyals and this number fantastically for al-Balah. Appropriate for me to bring everything out of Egypt." Zainab felt from Morocco that censorship is absent on traders in markets around the campus where they are exploiting simple people uneducated or do not know or do not know the currency account. Fatima said cleats and a Moroccan as well, "the prices of medicines are very expensive." He pointed to her husband Muhammad they had come in 2015 and the prices were significantly lower. The Fatima "There is exploitation of the ignorant. I hope that gets changed in the future. People come to the Prophet's Mosque and the Kaaba, but there is some exploitation and the absence of control because each vendor says the price you want and on the buyer to be alert to buy at the price the better." He explained Ismail factor in a hotel and a resident of Mecca that "prices in the surrounding markets high campus because rents shops there frequently are high and subject them to it," Mushir of that "prices for all goods in Azizia markets and others in the holy city of Mecca a lot less." "In some cases there are quality customers see that high prices mean better quality and the traders raise prices on certain people otherwise would not buy." Reuters