Saudi Arabia Finances & Islam

Saudi Arabia The Central Bank to finance the spread of Islam

'Billions Spent by Saudi Royal Family to Spread Islam to Every Corner of the Earth'

The March 1, 2002 edition of the Saudi government English weekly Ain Al-Yaqeen extensively detailed the Saudi royal family's efforts to spread Islam throughout the world. The following are excerpts taken from the article:

".The determination of the Kingdom to support Islam and Islamic institutions to the best of its ability was evident from the formation of the Kingdom by King Abdul Aziz but it was only when oil revenues began to generate real wealth that the Kingdom could fulfil its ambitions of spreading the word of Islam to every corner of the world, of assisting Muslim countries less well endowed economically and of alleviating the suffering of Muslim minorities wherever they might live."

"When King Fahd gave his support, either personally or through his government, to these institutions, it was also part of his purpose to challenge and expose the caricature of Islam, which is widely promoted by sections of the Western media. The voice of Islam and Arab culture is stronger now than it has been
for many decades and certainly far stronger than it would have been without King Fahd's contribution, but the bias against Islam, the tendency, in some quarters, to identify Islam with fanaticism or even terrorism persists and has not been completely erased from the popular mind in the West."

"The cost of King Fahd's efforts in this field has been astronomical, amounting to many billions of Saudi Riyals. In terms of Islamic institutions, the result is some 210 Islamic centres wholly or partly financed by Saudi Arabia, more than 1,500 mosques and 202 colleges and almost 2,000 schools for educating Muslim children in non-Islamic countries ! in Europe, North and South America, Australia and Asia. All over the world the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has supported and contributed in the establishment of mosques and Islamic centres."

"The Kingdom has established more than 1,359 mosques abroad at a cost of SR 820 million. King Fahd also established a number of scholarships and academic chairs in foreign prominent universities and colleges."

"In addition to establishing and contributing in the establishing of mosques and Islamic centres, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Ibn Abd Al-Aziz Al Saud, in the course of his reign, has overseen the establishment of a number of academic chairs in some of the most respected universities in the developed world. In setting up these prestigious chairs, the Kingdom has pursued a number of objectives. They are further evidence of King Fahd's determination to encourage and enhance communications between Islamic culture and other cultures; to encourage understand! ing of the true nature of Islam by explaining clearly Muslim beliefs and by correcting common misconceptions and misrepresentations; and to show that Islam embraces knowledge with enthusiasm."

"With his lifelong commitment to education as the key to unlocking the potential of the individual, it is not surprising that King Fahd Ibn Abd Al-Aziz initiated a program to establish Islamic academies in some of
the major capitals of the world. These academies were conceived in order to provide Muslim children abroad with the opportunity to attend an institution of academic excellence which could reinforce their
commitment to their culture, religion and language while at the same time opening constructive dialogue with the societies in which they lived."

"Outside the Arab Islamic world there is a number of Islamic research institutes supported by the Kingdom; amongst these are the American University of Colorado, the American University in Washington, the Arab World Institute, Paris, France which receives considerable Saudi contribution to its annual budget, the Duke University, North Carolina, the Howard University, Washington, the Institute of the History of Arab and Islamic Science, Frankfurt, Germany, the John Hopkins University, Maryland, the Middle East Institute, in Washington, the Shaw University, in North Carolina, and the Syracuse University, in New York."

"In addition to financing Islamic academic institutions and Islamic centres and mosques around the world, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has always been a leading member of international Islamic organisations.
Throughout King Fahd's reign, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has played an active role in all these organisations, using its inf! luence to nurture and encourage unity in the Islamic world amongst which the Organisation of the Islamic Conference and the World Assembly of Muslim Youth. In addition the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has played a role in nurturing Islamic unity through the Muslim World League, based in the Holy City of Makkah Al Mukkaramah.


Source: Saudi government English weekly Ain Al-Yaqeen