The Saudi student leader at the University of Kansas sees the biggest challenge for his homeland going forward as economic.
“It’s about the economy,” said Bander Almohammadi, “That’s why King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman are just estabilishing the new Vision 2030 that would improve economic development in Saudi Arabia.”
The goal of Vision 2030 is to diversify an economy which has been based on oil exports into one that can adjust to a world where climate change may change the overall size of the oil market in the long run.
“Last month, Prince Mohammed bin Salman just announced the big project in the Middle East,” said Almohammadi. “A new project that is located in the Red Sea, which is a huge project that would benefit Saudi Arabia and would improve the development in terms of economy.”
The Guardian reports that Richard Branson is investing in the tourism initiative and the project is slated to start in 2019. As for his personal experience, Almohammadi is happy with his family’s place in Lawrence.
“I have found friendly people who are very, very kind and caring in Lawrence and at the University of Kansas,” said Almohammadi. “They have greeted me and made me feel at home. Since classes began, I have knocked myself out acquiring more knowledge about the American justice system.”
Almohammadi notes that the Saudi Student Association at KU has about 160 students.
“The goal of our association is to be more productive to our community in Lawrence and to be more philanthropic to our community,” said Almohammadi.
Listen to Nick Gosnell’s full interview with Bander below