The authorities say this is the only way they will be able to make plans for social distancing that will keep people safe. Officials announced in June that this year's hajj will be restricted because of the pandemic.
"This wise statement aims at preserving sharia objectives, taking into account the safety of the pilgrims from Covid-19 pandemic, and to achieve global health security in the face of the spread and rise of infections and precautionary measures in this regard".
'This has been a really hard year, with Saudi Arabia facing declining revenue from all sectors - oil, tourism, domestic consumption, and now umrah and hajj, ' Karen Young, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.
The worldwide pilgrimage ban was announced as Saudi Arabia struggles to contain coronavirus infections, which have now risen to some 161,000 cases and caused more than 1,300 deaths.
Many pilgrims spend years saving enough to attend, or waiting to get a space allocated by their national government.
Saudi Arabia will strictly limit the number of people who can take part in this year's Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca because of the coronavirus, according to state-run media.
Saudi Arabia, whose virus cases have surpassed 161,000, announced on Monday it would hold a "very limited" Hajj this year, as it moves to curb the biggest coronavirus outbreak in the Gulf.
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"We must respect the decision", Sufmi said.
An estimated two million people would otherwise have visited Makkah and Madina this summer for the annual Islamic pilgrimage, the BBC said.
Saudi Arabia's borders have been shut to foreigners since late February in attempts to slow down the spread of the virus.
It defended its decision on religious grounds, as well, saying that the teachings of Islam require the preservation of human life. But it is highly contagious and can cause severe illness or death, particularly in older patients or those with underlying health problems.
In normal times the pilgrimage is one of the most significant moments in the Muslim religious calendar.