The Council of Saudi Chambers of Commerce and Industry has announced that the Fifth Saudi
Businessmen's Conference will take place in Taif in September. The three-day conference,
which is expected to attract over 1,000 participants, will feature working papers presented
by the various chambers of commerce and industry. The topics are related to the development
of trade and industry, such as encouraging the flow of the foreign investments into the
country, providing foreign investors with attractive incentives, and in particular ways of
dealing with changes resulting from membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO).
Meanwhile, the Council's Saudi Exports Development Center is sponsoring two 'Made in Saudi
Arabia' exhibitions, one in Tehran November 7 to 12, and one in Beirut September 15 to 21.
In addition, about 25 Saudi companies are taking part in the international exhibition in
Damascus August 28 to September 7.
Recent Saudi non-oil exports to these three countries amounted to SR 278.4 million (U.S. $
74.24 million) to Lebanon in 1998, and in 1997, SR 50 million (U.S. $ 13.3 million) to Iran
and SR 207 million (U.S. $ 55.2 million) to Syria. In 1997 the Kingdom exported non-oil
commodities valued almost SR 10 billion (U.S. $ 2.7 billion) to their 15 main trading
partners: United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Qatar, Egypt, Bahrain, Oman, United States, Jordan,
Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Italy, United Kingdom, Turkey and Sudan. To all countries, non-oil
exports for 1997 stood at SR 27.8 billion (U.S. $ 7.41 billion), an increase of 21.6
percent over the 1996 figures.