Britain's Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, left Riyadh today after a visit to the Kingdom during which he attended the awards ceremony on Friday for the 2001 King Faisal Foundation International Prize [link to web site http://www.kff.com ]. Before his departure, he visited the Al-Thimamah Wildlife Preserve and the Jenadriyah Farm, to the north of the city.
On Friday, Prince Charles was received by Deputy Prime Minister and Commander of the National Guard Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz. That evening, Crown Prince Abdullah presented the awards at the ceremony, at which Governor of Asir Province and Director-General of the King Faisal Foundation Prince Khalid Al-Faisal cited in his speech the great service its winners render to mankind, for example, the work in genomics by one of last year's winners Dr. John Craig Venter. Governor of Riyadh Province Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz, who, as Chairman of the Commission, received the prize for Service to Islam awarded to the Higher Commission for the Collection of Donations for Bosnia-Herzegovina, announced that the prize money would go to Bosnian projects for the provision of health care and educational services, and for the reconstruction and building of mosques, housing, cultural centers, schools, and Islamic colleges. Following the awards ceremony, Crown Prince Abdullah paid a visit to the joint exhibition of art at the Al-Faisaliyah Hall presenting works by Prince Charles and by Prince Khalid Al-Faisal.
Yesterday, Prince Charles met with Saudi businessmen and government representatives to review ways of establishing a fund, to be named the 'Centennial Fund', for the financing of small projects in order to encourage the involvement of young people in private enterprise. The meeting agreed that the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) should adopt the idea, with the Prince of Wales Foundation and British Aerospace providing the required technical and advisory assistance. A similar fund in the United Kingdom has had great success over the past 25 years.