In a bid to encourage gold trading and build collaborative relationships for developing gold market in Saudi Arabia, the top leadership of the World Gold Council (WGC) will make its visit to the Kingdom state this week.

A media release issued by WGC today, informed that Aram Shishmanian, Chief Executive Officer of the Council will meet the representatives of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's gold industry and government leaders to extend the collaborative support to the country for developing gold markets here.

The visit would help in exploring a number of initiatives to support the development of the gold market, which have been successfully implemented by the World Gold Council in collaboration with long-standing industry partners within the country. The WGC is hopeful to identify new areas of product development and fresh initiatives, helping to create enduring value for the gold market.

Commenting on his proposed visit, Shishmanian said, Saudi Arabia has and continues to be an important gold market in the region. Consumer gold demand in the country, which grew by 35% during the past year, represents a third of total gold demand in the Middle East. I am looking forward to meeting many of the leaders who have helped to drive this demand and to working together to develop innovative products which will drive future market growth.

Some of the initiatives that have been led by the World Gold Council in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia include the coming launch of Jeddah's Goldsmith Institute in cooperation with Jeddah Gate Of Gold Co (established by the head and members of Jeddah's Gold Committee (2006-2009) - a first of its kind in Saudi Arabia).

The WGC is also working to co-deliver seminars in Jeddah and Riyadh with the gold and jewellery committees and co-launching a new website - the 'Jeddah Gate of Gold'. In addition, the WGC is co-delivering a wedding campaign with L'azurde, as well as launching a new fine and fashionable gold jewellery brand, which will be launched in the last quarter of this year addressing the needs of the young consumers.

Shishmanian will be accompanied by Ajay Mitra, Managing Director of the Middle East, India and Turkey, and Saudi Arabia Country Manager, Bisher Diab.

Through working with our local partners, Diab and his dedicated team have already achieved significant successes in both Saudi Arabia and the region. This visit by our CEO further demonstrates our continued commitment to helping grow the gold market in Saudi Arabia, Mitra commented.

Saudi Arabia is a key region for the gold industry. Last month the World Gold Council released a report highlighting the recent revision of Saudi Arabia's Monetary Agency reported gold holdings from 144.3 tonnes to 322.9 tonnes.

In May, the WGC released its first quarter 2010 Gold Demand Trends (GDT) report, which cited consumer demand in Saudi Arabia as being the highest in the Middle East region at 21.1 tonnes for the quarter, representing a 35% increase over the same period in 2009 and representing almost a third of gold demand in the Middle East region, which stood at 65.8 tonnes. The GDT report also indicated that it expects demand for gold globally to remain strong during 2010.