As of January 1, 2018, the government of Saudi Arabia has imposed a 5% Value Added Tax (VAT) on most services and goods sold in the country. Before this, Saudi Arabia had no taxes. Folks buying clothes, shoes, groceries, etc., will now have to pay 5% more on the goods. The taxes collected will go to the government. The money will be used to fund development projects for the Saudi citizens.
A 35-year-old ban on movie theaters was lifted in December last year, and the first public screening of a movie was recently held in Saudi Arabia. The Emoji Movie was the first movie screened.
The King Abdulaziz Camel Festival is taking place in Saudi Arabia this month. The Festival celebrates camel traditions in the nation’s culture. There are many activities and competitions around camels including a camel beauty contest. This year, 12 camels have been disqualified from this contest as they were given medical treatment to make them look more handsome.
Saudi Arabia is a monarchy, where the leader of the country is the king. King Salman (image) is the current king. Various tribes ruled the area that is today called Saudi Arabia. Abdulaziz Al-Saud conquered and united the tribes and formed the modern nation of Saudi Arabia in 1932, becoming the first king. He is believed to have had over 30 sons and about 20 wives. All the kings after him have been his sons, including the current king. The capital is Riyadh and the official language is Arabic. All Saudis follow the religion of Islam.
Did you know?
A weekend in Saudi Arabia is on Friday and Saturday.
Image Credits: http://www.alaibilfestival.com for the King Abdulaziz Camel Festival image, https://www.saudi.gov.sa for the image of King Salman, http://www.imdb.com for the Emoji movie image, https://www.vat.gov.sa for the VAT image
Sources: http://www.alaibilfestival.com, reuters.com, https://www.vat.gov.sa, Newsweek, https://www.saudi.gov.sa, PBS