Saudi Arabia to broaden Hajj, Umrah services

ISLAMABAD: Saudi Arabia plans to broaden pilgrimage services as part of a diversification strategy. Economists consider Hajj and Umrah as vital sectors with significant growth potential, reported the Saudi Gazette newspaper on Saturday.

Umrah is an extra, optional pilgrimage and it can be undertaken at any time of the year.  The pilgrimage sector is the country’s second most important after oil and gas. Nearly two million foreign pilgrims visit the holy city of Makkah Mukarramah annually during Hajj while the figure is expected to reach 2.7 million by 2020. APP