Eko’s in the World Cup: Saudi Arabia

28 Oct, 2022

Today we will be talking about Saudi Arabia, the largest Arab country in Asia and in the Arabian Peninsula.

SAUDI ARABIA

  • Name as written in its native language: (السعودية)
  • Language: Arabic
  • Capital: Riyadh
  • Currency: Riyal (BRL 1.37 – exchange rate on 10/04/2022)
  • Main soccer player: Salman Al-Faraj
  • Typical dish: Kabsa

Interesting Facts

One of the most closed countries in the world, Saudi Arabia was not so far ago a destiny only for Muslims. But recently the country has started to open its borders to tourists from other parts of the world.

An agreement between Brazil and Saudi Arabia in 2021 made it easier for Brazilians to enter the country, with the issuance of tourist visas valid for 5 years, but the length of stay should not exceed 90 days in each trip and 180 days for an entire year. In addition, it is important to emphasize that tourist must respect local laws, which include the use of abaya (a long cloak that covers the legs and arms) for women and separate entrances per gender. This segregation is common in cafés, stores, and restaurants, but restaurants usually segregate into ‘single’ and ‘families’ spaces. Women accompanied by their partners may use the family entrance.

Saudi Arabia is the cradle of Islam and the religion governs the country’s laws and customs. The city of Medina, for instance, is considered sacred to Muslims, as it was the place where the religion flourished after Muhammad’s migration, the Hijrah (from Mecca to Yathrib – which later would change its name to Medina). In Saudi Arabia, there is also the city of Mecca, where Muhammad was born. According to the customs of Islam, Muslims must pray towards Mecca at least 5 times per day and it is even common to hear the call to pray. During prayers, tourists must not interrupt prayers even if they are waiting for a service.

The economy of Saudi Arabia is based on oil export. The country is one of the leading oil exporters in the world, which guarantees a stable and strong economy.

Arabic is the common language in Saudi Arabia and, as with all other languages, it is different in each region. It is important to emphasize that the Arabic spoken and written in Saudi Arabia is the one considered official by all countries where Arabic is spoken. Thus, documents in Arabic are issued according to the Saudi-Arabian writing.

The cuisine of Saudi Arabia also follows Islamic customs, which means that pork and alcohol are forbidden. The typical Saudi-Arabian dish is kabsa, a dish made with rice, spices, lamb, and chicken. According to the tradition, everyone who is present shares one only large plate, there are no individual plates. Everyone has their own place around this plate and the local usually don’t use cutlery.

The cuisine of Saudi Arabia also follows Islamic customs, which means that pork and alcohol are forbidden. The typical Saudi-Arabian dish is kabsa, a dish made with rice, spices, lamb, and chicken. According to the tradition, everyone who is present shares one only large plate, there are no individual plates. Everyone has their own place around this plate and the local usually don’t use cutlery.

In terms of soccer, Salman Al-Faraj, the captain of Saudi Arabia national team, stands out. The 33-year-old midfielder is also the captain of his team, Al Hilal, known by Brazilians for having competed for the FIFA Club World Cup. Al- Faraj is a left-footed attacking midfielder and all moves of the Saudi-Arabian national team usually pass through his feet, but his national team is considered to be the weakest in its group and it will be hard to overcome the stronger opponents.

This was Eko’s in the World Cup – Saudi Arabia. If you liked this, follow us on our social media (Instagram: @ekostraducoes / LinkedIn: ekostraducoes) and come back tomorrow, because we will be talking about Mexico.

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