Dubai: Saudi Arabia is set to open its first alcohol store in the capital, Riyadh, according to Reuters citing a source familiar with the plans.
The facility, located in the Diplomatic Quarter of the city, will cater exclusively to non-Muslim diplomats. To access the store, customers will be required to register through a mobile app and obtain a clearance code from the foreign ministry.
Additionally, they must adhere to monthly quotas for their alcohol purchases. The move is part of Saudi Arabia's ongoing efforts to promote tourism and business in the Kingdom.
The Riyadh alcohol store is situated in an area housing embassies and diplomats and will be "strictly restricted" to non-Muslims, as outlined in the document.
While it remains uncertain if other non-Muslim expatriates will have access to the store, it is worth noting that most expatriates in Saudi Arabia are Muslim workers from countries like Asia and Egypt.
Sources familiar with the plans expect the store's opening in the coming weeks.
Furthermore, the Saudi government introduced new restrictions on alcohol imports within diplomatic consignments, a move aimed at countering the illicit trade of alcohol goods and products received by diplomatic missions.
The Center of International Communication (CIC) clarified that these regulations would ensure that diplomats from non-Muslim embassies have access to alcohol products within specified quotas, in line with international diplomatic conventions.