(Photo: IINA)

Makkah, 19 Rabiul Awwal 1436/10 January 2015 (MINA) – As many as eight Southeast Asian countries — including Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Brunei, and China — have plans to rent out residential buildings for their pilgrims in the same neighborhood for Hajj so as to provide a package of common services.

Nabeel Zamzami, member of the real estate committee at the Makkah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the plan aims at reducing the cost of Haj operation and improving services for pilgrims, International Islamic News Agency (IINA) quoted by Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA) as reporting.

Haj missions of these countries have been instructed to bring down expenses by renting out residential towers that are licensed to accommodate more than 1,000 pilgrims, he said, quoting Haj mission officials from these countries.

The officials also noted that residential buildings at different localities in Makkah create difficulties for pilgrims as well as for those engaged in serving them.

The Haj quota for Indonesia, the most populous Muslim country, was about 171,000 in 2014, and there were 70 field offices (Maktab) to take care of their affairs. Around 22,000 Malaysian pilgrims performed Haj last year, while more than 15,000 pilgrims from the rest of the Southeast Asian countries came for Haj.

Zamzami said that Indonesian pilgrims and Haj officials had to face a lot of problems last year mainly because their Haj mission and medical mission operated from two districts, located far away from each other.

The Indonesian Haj mission is currently negotiating to sign agreement with a number of residential towers to accommodate 11,000 pilgrims in Makkah’s Aziziyah district. Meanwhile, a meeting of the real estate committee, held here on Wednesday, discussed a plan to launch the real estate index that would help realtors to fix prices of real estate in the holy city.

Rida Kurdi, a member of the committee, said that Makkah’s giant residential and hotel projects, which are under various phases of implementation, can accommodate huge number of pilgrims.

The hotel projects are being implemented on a total area of 1.2 million square meters. There are 15,000 hotel rooms at Jabal Omar Project and 22,000 rooms at Abraj Al-Bait. (T/P011/R04)


Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)