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Red Sea Global welcomes Irish government to Riyadh as it signs SAR 1 billion deal with daa International


10 Oct 2022


Red Sea Global welcomes Irish government to Riyadh as it signs SAR 1 billion deal with daa International


10 Oct 2022


  • Daa International has been appointed to manage operations at Red Sea International airport.

Riyadh, (10 October 2022): Red Sea Global (Formerly known as TRSDC), the developer behind the world’s most ambitious regenerative tourism projects, The Red Sea and Amaala, has confirmed daa International as the operator at Red Sea International (RSI). The latest agreement covers operations and general maintenance services worth close to SAR 1 billion and is set to propel the airport on its journey towards environmental sustainability powered by 100 percent renewable energy.


“Ahead of welcoming our first guests early next year, Red Sea International is ushering in a carbon-neutral, net-zero era for airport designs and operations. As the region’s first-ever airport powered by 100 percent renewable energy, RSI will serve as an innovative blueprint for decarbonized urban destinations of the future.”
Said John Pagano, Group CEO of RSG.


RSG welcomed a delegation of Irish dignitaries to its offices in Riyadh to celebrate the signing of the agreement. Minister of State at the Department of Transport in Ireland, Ms Hildegarde Naughton TD, and Ireland’s Ambassador to the Kingdom, Gerry Cunningham were both present, alongside Enterprise Ireland, the country’s trade organization. Additionally, the event was attended by His Excellency the President of the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA), Mr. Abdul-Azeer bin Abdullah Al-Duailej.


"Our agreement with leading industry player daa International, with a proven track-record of excelling in international aviation, marks our latest step towards materializing a sustainable, regenerative gateway that will open this under-explored region of Saudi Arabia to the world,”

Mr. Pagano added.

Daa International will serve as the airport operator for RSI in 2023, overseeing design consultancy, management, and operations in accordance with the provisions of General Authority of Civil Aviation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (GACA) and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). Services will also enable the seamless integration of green technology and waste and resource management, aligned with the highest standards of sustainability, while prioritizing safety and security.


Nicholas Cole, CEO of daa International, said: “The Red Sea International airport is primed to deliver luxury guest experiences unlike any other. We are thrilled to partner with RSG to bring to life a seamless, ultra-premium, highly personalized experience for each passenger traveling through this unique gateway, underpinned by stringent sustainability goals.”


The partnership will harness daa International’s extensive credentials in airport operations. Together with RSG, collective efforts will integrate innovative solutions across all RSI operations to eliminate and offset carbon emissions, optimize energy consumption, and advance efficiencies in resource and waste management. RSG and daa International are working together towards ACI Europe’s Airport Carbon Accreditation Program with the intention of securing the highest current standard Level 4+, which would make RSI the first new airport to ever secure this standard before operations commence. Discussions are also in progress with regards to creating a new ‘Level 5’ standard, in turn making RSI the first airport in the world to acquire this new industry leading rating.

RSI is a uniquely regenerative airport, designed by international architecture firm Foster + Partners to provide an unforgettable aviation experience. The project is on-track to welcome its first passengers in 2023, with capabilities to serve an estimated one million domestic and international tourists per year by 2030 – at a peak of 900 travelers per hour. 

The airport was successfully registered with the International Air Transport Association (IATA), and recently completed test landings and take-offs on the 3.7km main runway. The team also celebrated eight million safe man-hours with 2,400 workers.

RSI will be the first and only airport in the region with a dedicated runway for seaplanes and water aerodromes, regulated by a new set of GACA safety guidelines. The destination will also service hydrogen-powered seaplane variants, supplied by hydrogen-electric aviation firm ZeroAvia, as well as electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) and electric short takeoff and landing (eSTOL) aircraft technology.

About Red Sea Global

Red Sea Global (RSG - is a closed joint-stock company wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of Saudi Arabia. It is a vertically integrated real estate developer with a diverse portfolio across tourism, residential, experiences, infrastructure, transport, healthcare, and services. This includes the luxury regenerative tourism destinations The Red Sea, which began welcoming guests in 2023, and AMAALA, which remains on track to welcome first guests in 2025. A third destination, Thuwal Private Retreat, will open this year, and RSG has also been entrusted with refurbishment works at Al Wajh Airport, focused on upgrading the existing terminal and infrastructure, and building a new international terminal. RSG is a cornerstone of Saudi Arabia’s ambition to diversify its economy. Across its growing portfolio of destinations, subsidiaries, and businesses, RSG seeks to lead the world towards a more sustainable future, showing how responsible development can uplift communities, drive economies, and enhance the environment.

RSG is the visionary company behind some of the world’s most ambitious development ventures, including luxury regenerative tourism destinations such as The Red Sea and AMAALA.

Across its portfolio, RSG leverages the most innovative concepts, strategies, and technologies to deliver projects that actively enhance the wellbeing of customers, communities, and environments.

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