Visitors watch a 3D presentation during an exhibition on 'Neom', a new business and industrial city, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, October 25, 2017. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser
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The $500 billion megacity planned by Saudi Arabia will be floated on financial markets alongside oil giant Saudi Aramco as part of the kingdom's drive to diversify away from oil, Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman told Reuters late Wednesday.Saudi Arabia has already started to relax some long-standing rules, including what was an effective ban on women driving.The new city is part of the crown prince's ambitious Vision 2030 plan to overhaul the economy of Saudi Arabia, OPEC's largest producer, and provide jobs for an overwhelmingly young population in the face of a global oil price decline since 2014 .The kingdom had made a 20 percent profit in five months with the SoftBank Vision Fund, the world's largest private equity fund.Prince Mohammad also said Saudi Arabia's dispute with neighboring Qatar had not affected investment.Prince Mohammad said the kingdom's war in Yemen would continue in order to prevent the armed Houthi movement from turning into another "Hezbollah" on Saudi Arabia's southern border.Yemen's location is crucial, Prince Mohammad said.
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