Saudis will be able to travel by Hyperloop by the end of next year, Colin Rice, the deputy chairman of Virgin Hyperloop One said, according to media reports at the weekend.
The kingdom is one of a number of countries around the world, including the United Arab Emirates and India, which are looking to embrace Hyperloop technology.
The new rapid transit service will help to reduce the travel time between Riyadh and Jeddah from ten hours to around 50 minutes.
Rice said the futuristic transport mode will create “thousands of high value job opportunities within the first year since its launch,” the Saudi Gazette newspaper reported, adding that the bulk of the employment opportunities will be in the building and construction, programming and architecture sectors.
Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, the chairman of Virgin Hyperloop One, in November said there had been “big interest” in the technology from investors in Saudi Arabia.
Speaking to CNBC, bin Sulayem – who is also chairman and CEO of Dubai-based ports operator DP World – said that “when the right time comes, we will restart talking to Saudi Arabia about their plans and how Hyperloop can fit in those plans.”