The Saudi Tourism Ministry and the Saudi Tourism Authority (STA) have announced the development of non-fungible token (NFT) souvenirs.

The Minister of Tourism, Ahmed Al-Khateeb, handed customized digital keepsakes to the chiefs of delegations attending the 116th session of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Executive Council, which was recently held in Jeddah.

The Ministry’s innovative keepsakes combine the physical world with the metaverse, an immersive virtual reality world with a simulated digital environment that incorporates augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), blockchain, and digital media aspects for social interactions.

A virtual reality art display was conducted on the margins of the UNWTO summit, in which a creative artist created a selection of 3D landscapes inspired by virtual Saudi landmarks.

The 3D drawings were converted to NFTs and given to the visitors as keepsakes, along with a ledger wallet that gives them a blockchain address to access their individually owned artworks.

These NFTs keepsakes, according to Al-Khateeb, represent the leadership’s vision for Saudi Arabia’s future and its commitment to digital transformation.

“As technology progresses, it is critical that we stay on the cutting edge of innovation,” “he stated

According to him, the Kingdom’s tourist infrastructure is built to allow it to accept new trends and digital transformation, which is one of the ministry’s major goals.

“The NFTs make a powerful message to the world by demonstrating how distinguished Saudi Arabia is, having developed an unrivaled tourist industry where visitors can expect to see and experience unique and futuristic offers.”

The Minister of Tourism expressed his delight that the UNWTO’s visitors were able to have a digital representation of themselves through the NFT gifts.

“We are overjoyed that our guests will be able to take home a digital representation of their amazing moments spent here at the Kingdom’s most exciting tourist attractions,” he added.

It’s worth noting that Saudi Arabia has achieved significant progress in digital transformation and is working to accelerate the growth of its digital economy in accordance with Vision 2030’s directions.

The Ministry of Tourism, as part of its commitment to these aims, released a three-year Digital Tourism Strategy earlier this year.

The plan focuses on nine creative projects consisting of 31 main activities, with the goal of boosting the sector’s growth, creating new employment, and fostering innovation.

These projects will help the Kingdom achieve its National Tourism Strategy and Vision 2030 goals, which include 100 million additional visitors, a 10% GDP contribution from tourist, and 1 million new tourism employment.

It’s worth noting that the non-fungible token (NFTs) allows artists from all over the world to keep and prove ownership of a digital asset for their creative works, which may include everything from art to music to audio recordings to a tweet, in order to profit from ownership or the right to own.

The NFTs can also be stored on the blockchain system, which is used to track Bitcoin transactions.

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