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Saudi Arabia records less than 500 new COVID-19 cases for first time in 5 months

Author: Zaynab KhojjiID: 1600607173482466000Sun, 2020-09-20 16:25 LONDON: Saudi Arabia announced 483 new cases of the coronavirus, the first time the number has been below the 500 mark since mid-April. Of the new cases, 64 were recorded in Jeddah
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia records less than 500 new COVID-19 cases for first time in 5 months

Author: Zaynab KhojjiID: 1600607173482466000Sun, 2020-09-20 16:25 LONDON: Saudi Arabia announced 483 new cases of the coronavirus, the first time the number has been below the 500 mark since mid-April. Of the new cases, 64 were recorded in Jeddah, 42 in Makkah, 30 in Riyadh, 23 in Madinah and 17 in Dammam. The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom increased to 310,439 after 1,009 more patients recovered from the virus. The total number of deaths in the Kingdom increased to 4,485 after 27 more people succumbed to the virus. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: CoronavirusSaudi Arabia Blessing in disguise: How pandemic was a catalyst for Saudi SMEs to changeSaudi Arabia's Al-Hilal says 10 players infected with COVID-19, requests match postponement

Blessing in disguise: How pandemic was a catalyst for Saudi SMEs to change

Sun, 2020-09-20 00:25 JEDDAH: Saudis continue to shop online despite the government easing the COVID-19 lockdown, with the surge in e-commerce prompting small and medium-sized enterprises to adapt. E-commerce saved global retail markets from collapse and s
Saudi Arabia

Blessing in disguise: How pandemic was a catalyst for Saudi SMEs to change

Sun, 2020-09-20 00:25 JEDDAH: Saudis continue to shop online despite the government easing the COVID-19 lockdown, with the surge in e-commerce prompting small and medium-sized enterprises to adapt. E-commerce saved global retail markets from collapse and stopped consumers from having to go out during the first wave of the outbreak. However, SMEs were the most vulnerable to the pandemic’s consequences and e-platforms played a crucial role in their survival. Saudi Arabia’s consumer behavior was transformed during the COVID-19 lockdown as soon as stores were ordered to shut their doors, creating a frenzy among consumers although they were quick to adapt. SMEs were also forced to adapt, not only to accommodate the growing demand for online shopping but to ensure they survived with minimal losses. Marion Janson, the chief economist at the UN’s International Trade Centre, said in June that around 20 percent of SMEs globally may not survive the pandemic. A recent report from Visa revealed increased anxiety among merchants in Saudi Arabia, with 67 percent of small businesses noticing a decrease in average consumer spending. Many Saudi consumers started shopping online for the first time, primarily for essentials. The Visa report showed that two-thirds of the Saudi consumers surveyed said that COVID-19 led to their first online grocery purchase, while 59 percent made their first online purchase from pharmacies. “With the confusion at the beginning, we didn’t know what was acceptable and what wasn’t,” said Dr. Suhad Zain, a government employee in Jeddah. “Can we risk going out to shop for our daily needs or not? We needed to be sure that everyone in the house was safe, including the driver, and not expose ourselves to the invisible menace that changed our lifestyles. Most of our groceries were obtained online, from produce to water bottles to even appliances and leisure items. It had to be done, even though we needed time to accept the new change.” Fear of the virus is expected to change the way consumers behave forever. “It became more convenient even after the lockdown was lifted,” Zain added. “After a few months we got used to it and, as a family, it became our new preferred means of purchase.” Such conditions were a catalyst for online commerce, according to the Visa report, with 38 percent of merchants in the country reporting the introduction of online offerings as a direct result of the pandemic while more than half had an e-commerce presence before the pandemic. Two-thirds of the Saudi consumers said COVID-19 led to their first online grocery purchase, while 59% made their first online purchase from pharmacies. (GettyImages) The report also said there was a surge in e-commerce, a preference for trusted brands, a decline in discretionary spending, and a polarization of sustainability. Consumers have a larger basket, but reduced shopping frequency, and will shift to stores closer to home. A change can easily be detected in Saudi consumer behavior. But the shift to online commerce, with cash transactions being replaced by digital payments, has negatively influenced cash-only retailers and presents a tough challenge to these merchants, who have to understand the shift in consumer behavior and adapt accordingly and urgently. “Saudi business owners currently face multiple challenges that they need to deal with when they want to shift to e-commerce, some of them even lack the knowledge of how technology could benefit them and what options it could offer,” Talal Abdullah, a business development and marketing consultant, told Arab News. “Also some will need to find a technical partner to successfully transform to e-commerce and, most importantly, they need to revisit their business model canvas to determine how they want to employ this technology for the best of their businesses.” In order to overcome these challenges, Abdullah suggested that business owners look for the right technical partner based on their new model. “If they fail to find a suitable technical partner, then they need to set a clear budget for the application or website they need to set up. But before reaching out to any company that offers support with these technical services, you must get in touch with real clients of these companies and inquire about their business and how they deal with them.” He added that seeking assistance from technical consultants or owners of similar projects could cut down on time and effort. Joining business accelerators and incubators, as well as entrepreneurship and technology communities, could help with expanding knowledge and relationships and contribute overall to a smoother transition. But these changes have their costs too, imposing new financial burdens on an already weakened business due to the pandemic and the time required to build and adapt a new business model that targets a completely different group of customers. It is a serious challenge for many small retailers. Abu Mohammed has been in the retail business for 20 years. He used to have frequent customers who came in for a specific type of clothing with a certain price range. But, with the lockdown, he could hardly sell anything. “I began targeting a different kind of customer in the past couple of years where I was importing new clothes and selling them through Instagram and e-commerce websites,” he told Arab News. “However I still cannot completely substitute my current store with a completely virtual one. That needs time and money to build a reputation.” He said the lockdown had been a harsh experience for him and that he recognized the need to expedite his old plans to transform his store into an actual brand, since people were gradually moving toward online shopping from well-known brands. “This transformation is not going to be easy at all,” he added. “It will need a good marketing plan and well-spent money not only on tools but also staff. It is a completely new experience, however. I know e-commerce is here to stay and it is our only way forward. Otherwise my work for years will gradually vanish. This crisis could be a blessing in disguise, who knows.” Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: small and medium enterprises (SMEs)Coroanvirus Pandemic e-commerce spurs race for electric delivery vansCoronavirus lockdowns give major boost to global e-commerce

Madinah governor opens project for needy students

Author: Sun, 2020-09-20 00:44 MADINAH: Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman on Saturday inaugurated a project for needy students in the region. The project launched by the Ministry of Education in collaboration with the “Good City” initiative aims
Saudi Arabia

Madinah governor opens project for needy students

Author: Sun, 2020-09-20 00:44 MADINAH: Madinah Gov. Prince Faisal bin Salman on Saturday inaugurated a project for needy students in the region. The project launched by the Ministry of Education in collaboration with the “Good City” initiative aims to provide needy students with necessary educational supplies. In the first phase of the project, 6,000 electronic devices such as tablets, etc. will be distributed among students. The program also includes maintenance, programming, and repair of all devices free of charge in cooperation with the Technical Education and Vocational Training Center in Madinah. The Madinah governor instructed the relevant authorities to deliver equipment to selected students within three weeks. Prince Faisal also called on the business community to contribute to the charitable project to ensure continuity of education during the pandemic and to make it easier for needy students to achieve their educational goals. Education Minister Dr. Hamad bin Mohammed Al-Asheikh thanked the governor for giving special attention to the education sector in the region and for his support to the initiative to help needy students. Authorities in Madinah are taking several measures to boost the education sector. One of the many initiatives includes a system for the professional development of teachers in collaboration with the Ministry of Education. Due to the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, authorities have taken all measures to ensure effective distant learning programs at all educational levels.   Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: MadinahCoronavirus Madinah governor OKs two new categories to annual excellence awardsMadinah governor inaugurates two power projects

Reem A. Alfrayan, executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat

Author: Sun, 2020-09-20 00:59 Dr. Reem A. Alfrayan has been the executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat since January 2019. Commenting on women’s empowerment in the Kingdom, she recently said on a TV show: “We’ve passed the stage of dreaming
Saudi Arabia

Reem A. Alfrayan, executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat

Author: Sun, 2020-09-20 00:59 Dr. Reem A. Alfrayan has been the executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat since January 2019. Commenting on women’s empowerment in the Kingdom, she recently said on a TV show: “We’ve passed the stage of dreaming; with the help of Vision 2030, they’ve become a reality, we need new dreams now.” She was the first woman to be appointed as assistant secretary-general at the Council of Saudi Chambers in September 2014. Alfrayan received a bachelor’s degree in technical education and training, workforce development and education at Ohio State University in 2001. In 2002, she earned a master’s degree in instructional technologies and media policy, and leadership from the same university. Alfrayan obtained another master’s degree in educational leadership and organization, policy and leadership at the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2013. She did a Ph.D. in educational leadership and organization from the same university in 2014. After obtaining her first master’s degree, she joined the Arab Open University as instructional technology unit supervisor at its headquarters in Kuwait in 2003. Between 2005 and 2006, Alfrayan served as a training specialist with a project launched by the General Authority for Tourism and Antiquities. She then joined King Abdul Aziz Medical City as an administrative planning and processing development officer. She also served as general manager of businesswomen’s affairs at the Council of Saudi Chambers from October 2007 to January 2010. Alfrayan also actively participates in volunteer work.   Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Who's Who Moudhi Al-Jamea, general manager of digital technology at STC AcademyRumaih bin Mohammed Al-Rumaih, chairman of the Saudi Public Transport Authority

Global leaders discuss ways to bridge the digital gap and confront the coronavirus

Sun, 2020-09-20 03:01 Saudi Arabia represented by Dr. Mohammed bin Saud Al-Tamimi, governor of the Saudi Communication and Information Technology Commission, took part in a virtual meeting of the UN Commission on Broadband and Sustainable Development. Globa
Saudi Arabia

Global leaders discuss ways to bridge the digital gap and confront the coronavirus

Sun, 2020-09-20 03:01 Saudi Arabia represented by Dr. Mohammed bin Saud Al-Tamimi, governor of the Saudi Communication and Information Technology Commission, took part in a virtual meeting of the UN Commission on Broadband and Sustainable Development. Global leaders in the field of communications and IT attended the meeting. The UN body works to launch initiatives related to the use of broadband as a tool for socioeconomic development around the world. Al-Tamimi highlighted the reach and role of the internet in the Kingdom and the strides the Kingdom has made in the field of technology. He also outlined the steps Saudi Arabia has taken as chair of the G20 presidency this year to promote the use of digital technology around the world and to bridge the digital gap and confront the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic using modern technology. The participants discussed the use of technology in the health and education sectors and ways to encourage young entrepreneurs to use the internet for online businesses. Saudi Arabia is an active member of the UN committee, which was launched 10 years ago. One of the commission’s goals is to advocate that broadband infrastructure be given the highest priority level in future development policy and city planning frameworks. Since 2012, it has published an annual State of Broadband report, positioned as a snapshot of the global broadband industry. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: UN Commission on Broadband and Sustainable DevelopmentG20 Saudi Arabia 2020G20 SummitG20 Summit 2020Coroanvirus Blessing in disguise: How pandemic was a catalyst for Saudi SMEs to changeSaudi Arabia's Al-Hilal says 10 players infected with COVID-19, requests match postponement

G20 commerce ministers to discuss trade

Sun, 2020-09-20 03:15 RIYADH: The G20 commerce and investment ministers will hold a meeting on Tuesday. The meeting aims to strengthen cooperation in commerce and investment policies. The minister will discuss ways to help boost growth and promote an inclus
Saudi Arabia

G20 commerce ministers to discuss trade

Sun, 2020-09-20 03:15 RIYADH: The G20 commerce and investment ministers will hold a meeting on Tuesday. The meeting aims to strengthen cooperation in commerce and investment policies. The minister will discuss ways to help boost growth and promote an inclusive and sustainable economy. They will also discuss steps to prop up the economy that has been badly affected by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. The meeting will discuss G20 measures to support international commerce and investment in response to the pandemic and means to support reforms for a multilateral trading system. Following the meeting, Saudi Commerce Minister Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi and Minister of Investment Khalid Al-Falih will hold a press conference to brief the media about the meeting. Saudi Arabia, the chair of the G20 presidency this year, has pledged its commitment to tackling the devastating impact of the pandemic on developing countries and some of society’s most vulnerable groups. To achieve a quick economic response, specifically targeting developing countries, the G20 countries have coordinated with international financial institutions to provide the necessary liquidity to needy countries around the world.   The group’s finance ministers and central bank governors had adopted an action plan in April aimed at supporting the global economy at this critical stage in the health crisis in order to achieve economic recovery as soon as possible. The Kingdom is set to host the 15th G20 Summit in Riyadh on Nov. 21 and 22. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: G20 Saudi Arabia 2020G20 Summit G20 trade and investment ministers to meet on global economyG20 ministers discuss preserving environment

Saudi Arabia backs UN’s coronavirus response plan with $100 million

Sat, 2020-09-19 19:46 RIYADH: Saudi Arabia said Friday it was donating $100 million to the World Health Organization (WHO) and toward a number of projects in support of a United Nations response plan to combat the coronavirus pandemic. The announcement was
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia backs UN’s coronavirus response plan with $100 million

Sat, 2020-09-19 19:46 RIYADH: Saudi Arabia said Friday it was donating $100 million to the World Health Organization (WHO) and toward a number of projects in support of a United Nations response plan to combat the coronavirus pandemic. The announcement was made by the Kingdom’s permanent representative to the UN, Ambassador Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, during a virtual event with UN Secretary-General António Guterres, Saudi Press Agency reported. “The International Response Plan to coronavirus pandemic, the WHO and other UN agencies will benefit from this Saudi donation,” Al-Mouallimi tweeted following the meeting. During a virtual meeting between Amb @amouallimi & UNSG @antonioguterres, H.E. announced the #Kingdom's donation of One Hundred Million Dollar to support the International Response Plan to #Coronavirus pandemic; @WHO & other #UN agencies will benefit from this #Saudi donation pic.twitter.com/pJw8LmtE5h — KSA Mission UN (@ksamissionun) September 18, 2020 Earlier, Al-Mouallimi said that “this support comes within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s international efforts in support of the response to combating the coronavirus, and awareness of the importance of cooperation, solidarity and collective and international action to foster a transparent, robust, coordinated and wide-ranging global response.” He said the Kingdom was carrying out “the role it has been entrusted with toward multilateralism, collective and international action in order to confront the COVID-19 pandemic,” adding that Saudi Arabia was one of the first countries “to extend a hand of aid and coordination” with countries affected by the spread of the virus. Al-Mouallimi said that the Kingdom is working to enable the UN to lead international action to intensify global efforts to combat coronavirus, and to enhance support for developing countries and the most vulnerable regions in fighting this pandemic. In particular, he mentioned assisting refugees, raising the standards of living among the world’s poorest groups, developing fragile economies, mediating an end to conflicts, and building more harmonious relationships between nations. Guterres thanked King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for the Kingdom’s generous and continuous support to the organization, saying that Saudi Arabia worked in partnership with the UN to support security, stability and prosperity in all parts of the world, especially in Yemen.   Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Abdallah Al-MouallimiSaudi ArabiaCoronavirusCOVID-19Antonio GuterresUN International Response Plan Saudi aid agency opens dialysis center in BeirutSaudi Arabia registers 551 new coronavirus cases, 28 deaths

Fire in Taif’s Amad Mountain ‘under control’ — Saudi civil defense

Sat, 2020-09-19 21:58 RIYADH: The percentage of a fire on Amad mountain in Maysan governorate now under control is “very high, despite the intensity of the winds and the topography of the site,” Saudi Arabia’s civil defense said on Saturday. The Direc
Saudi Arabia

Fire in Taif’s Amad Mountain ‘under control’ — Saudi civil defense

Sat, 2020-09-19 21:58 RIYADH: The percentage of a fire on Amad mountain in Maysan governorate now under control is “very high, despite the intensity of the winds and the topography of the site,” Saudi Arabia’s civil defense said on Saturday. The Director General of the Directorate of Civil Defense, Lt. Gen. Sulaiman Al-Amro, was investigating the operation plans and efforts being made to extinguish the fire, a day after it erupted in Taif, western Saudi Arabia. He said civil defense teams were “doubling efforts and making use of the large technical mechanisms and equipment, which contributed to reducing the seriousness of the fire and preventing its spread,” Saudi Press Agency reported. On Friday, the media spokesperson for the civil defense in Makkah, Col. Mohammed Al-Qarni, said that the fire was receding and confined to one area, adding that “field command and support plans have been created to deal with the fire using human and mechanical capabilities that require dealing with state variables.” He said the fire broke out in a mountainous area with very rugged heights and civil defense teams managed to cordon and isolate the fire to prevent it from spreading further. “The site is uninhabited and no injuries were recorded,” Al-Qarni added. Al-Amro conveyed the thanks of Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif, Minister of Interior, to the civil defense teams and the government and private agencies supporting the work of the Directorate of Civil Defense, as well as volunteer teams, appreciating everyone’s role. He conducted a field tour of the fire sites in Amad Mountain (Jabal Amad) and “assessed the mechanism of action and confrontation that is being implemented,” SPA said. After that, he held a meeting with the civil defense leaders at the field command headquarters at the site of the accident and discussed a number of related issues. Amad Mountain rises more than 2,000 feet above sea level and is famous for its juniper trees. It is home to large numbers of livestock. The area is also known for other tourist attractions, including Hathwa’ parks and Al-Barda Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: TaifAmad MountainGeneral Directorate of Civil DefenseSaudi ArabiaCol. Mohammed Al-QarniLt. Gen. Sulaiman Al-AmroMaysan governoratefire Fire continues to blaze on Taif’s Amad Mountain, no casualties reportedDesalination tunnel project completed in Saudi Arabia’s Taif

Yemen’s Houthis launch military projectile toward Jazan, 5 civilians injured

Sat, 2020-09-19 23:19 RIYADH: Five people were injured on Saturday after a military projectile launched by Yemen’s Houthi militia fell in Jazan, southwestern Saudi Arabia, state news agency SPA said. The media spokesperson for the Civil Defense directorat
Saudi Arabia

Yemen’s Houthis launch military projectile toward Jazan, 5 civilians injured

Sat, 2020-09-19 23:19 RIYADH: Five people were injured on Saturday after a military projectile launched by Yemen’s Houthi militia fell in Jazan, southwestern Saudi Arabia, state news agency SPA said. The media spokesperson for the Civil Defense directorate in Jazan region, Col. Mohammed bin Yahya Al-Ghamdi, said that “the directorate had received a report about the fall of a military projectile launched by the Iranian-backed Houthi militia from inside Yemeni territory toward one of the border villages in Al-Harath governorate in Jazan region.” Al-Ghamdi said the projectile damaged the exterior of a civilian object protected under international humanitarian law and three vehicles.  The five people were injured from the flying shrapnel and were taken to the hospital. The statement said “their health condition is stable, and the procedures adopted in such cases have also been directly implemented.” Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Houthi militiaYemenJazanSaudi ArabiaprojectileCol. Mohammed bin Yahya Al-Ghamdi Fire in Taif’s Amad Mountain ‘under control’ — Saudi civil defenseHouthi weapon-smuggling cell linked to Iran’s revolutionary guards apprehended

Saudi Arabia registers 551 new coronavirus cases, 28 deaths

Author: Sat, 2020-09-19 15:50 RIYADH: An additional 28 people in Saudi Arabia have died of COVID-19-related conditions, authorities announced on Saturday. The total number of deaths now stands at 4,458, the Saudi Press Agency reported. Tests have conf
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia registers 551 new coronavirus cases, 28 deaths

Author: Sat, 2020-09-19 15:50 RIYADH: An additional 28 people in Saudi Arabia have died of COVID-19-related conditions, authorities announced on Saturday. The total number of deaths now stands at 4,458, the Saudi Press Agency reported. Tests have confirmed 551 new cases in the Kingdom, which means that 329,271 people have contracted the disease. Of those, 15,383 cases remain active, and 1,166 patients are in critical condition. According to the Ministry of Health, the total number of recoveries in the Kingdom increased to 309,430 after 1,078 more patients recovered from the virus. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaCoronavirusCOVID-19 Saudi Arabia announces 31 more deaths from COVID-19Fall in Saudi COVID-19 cases, says Health Ministry

ThePlace: Murabba Palace in Riyadh where King Abdul Aziz used to receive kings and heads of state

Sat, 2020-09-19 00:57 Murabba Palace at King Abdul Aziz Historical Center in Riyadh is one of the city’s prominent historical landmarks. The palace was built by the founder of the Kingdom King Abdul Aziz in 1937 outside the walls of the old city of Riyadh
Saudi Arabia

ThePlace: Murabba Palace in Riyadh where King Abdul Aziz used to receive kings and heads of state

Sat, 2020-09-19 00:57 Murabba Palace at King Abdul Aziz Historical Center in Riyadh is one of the city’s prominent historical landmarks. The palace was built by the founder of the Kingdom King Abdul Aziz in 1937 outside the walls of the old city of Riyadh. The palace complex was built on a plot called “Murabba Al-Sufyan,” which was used for farming during the rainy season, according to the documents at the King Abdul Aziz Foundation for Research and Archives (Darah). King Abdul Aziz used to receive kings and visiting heads of state and make historical agreements at Murabba Palace. The palace was built in the traditional Najdian style, characterized by the highest levels of workmanship and design. The huge walls and internal and external ceilings are built with tamarisk and palm tree fronds. Stones were used in the foundations and columns, and wood was used for doors and windows. This photograph was taken by Mohammad Abdu as part of the Colors of Saudi collection.   Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: ThePlace ThePlace: Thi Ain Heritage Village in KSA’s Al-Baha dates back hundreds of years ThePlace: Rock inscriptions of Al-Shuwaymis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Saudi Arabia’s Hail

G20 ministers discuss preserving environment

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:01 RIYADH: Tackling land degradation and habitat loss, and conserving coral reefs were among the items discussed at a meeting of G20 environment ministers. The aim of the gathering was to strengthen policy cooperation toward safeguarding
Saudi Arabia

G20 ministers discuss preserving environment

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:01 RIYADH: Tackling land degradation and habitat loss, and conserving coral reefs were among the items discussed at a meeting of G20 environment ministers. The aim of the gathering was to strengthen policy cooperation toward safeguarding the planet’s ecosystems and biodiversity, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday. During the meeting, chaired by Saudi Minister of Environment, Water, and Agriculture Abdulrahman Al-Fadley, ministers focused on land and marine environment-related issues and the conservation of natural resources. They also discussed methods to reduce land degradation and conserve biodiversity.     Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: G20 Saudi Arabia 2020G20 Summit 2020G20 Summit G20 ministers call for equal COVID-19 vaccines accessSaudi FM discusses G20 with Russian, South African counterparts

Organization of Islamic Cooperation condemns Houthi attack on Khamis Mushayt

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:14 RIYADH: The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Friday condemned the Iran-backed Houthi militia’s targeting of civilians in the Saudi city of Khamis Mushayt, the Saudi Press Agency reported. Arab coalition spokesman, Col. Tu
Saudi Arabia

Organization of Islamic Cooperation condemns Houthi attack on Khamis Mushayt

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:14 RIYADH: The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Friday condemned the Iran-backed Houthi militia’s targeting of civilians in the Saudi city of Khamis Mushayt, the Saudi Press Agency reported. Arab coalition spokesman, Col. Turki Al-Maliki, said that an armed drone was intercepted and destroyed on Thursday. OIC Secretary-General Dr. Yousef Al-Othaimeen stressed his organization’s denunciation of the continual assaults by Houthi terrorist militia and their supporters that systematically and deliberately attacked civilians and civil targets in the Kingdom. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Arab coalition destroys armed Houthi drone targeting Saudi Arabia Yemeni government renews commitment to lasting peace, slams Houthis for undermining process

Moudhi Al-Jamea, general manager of digital technology at STC Academy

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:30 Moudhi Al-Jamea has been the general manager of digital technology at STC Academy, Saudi Telecom Company’s technology and leadership academy, since February 2019. She has a bachelor’s degree in computer and information systems fro
Saudi Arabia

Moudhi Al-Jamea, general manager of digital technology at STC Academy

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:30 Moudhi Al-Jamea has been the general manager of digital technology at STC Academy, Saudi Telecom Company’s technology and leadership academy, since February 2019. She has a bachelor’s degree in computer and information systems from King Faisal University, a master’s in information technology and e-business from the University of Greenwich, and a doctorate in computer security and informatics from King’s College London. After graduating in 2006 Al-Jamea took on the role of CEO at Superior IT Services for seven years. In 2013, while studying in the UK, she became the vice president of the Scientific Society for Saudi Students. From 2015 to 2016 she was a member of the board of trustees behind the first “Innovation and Entrepreneurship Prize” for Saudi Students in the UK, aimed at encouraging them to participate in creative thinking. She then worked as a security consultant partner at Ibtkar Strategic Consultancy, liaising between its offices in the UK, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. She has retained a career in education while completing her studies and acting as CEO. She started as a lecturer in 2010 at Imam Abdulrahman bin Faisal University in Dammam. In 2017 she became an assistant professor while also being president of the entrepreneurship and incubator unit. She is certified in ethical hacking from the EC-Council and completed the women’s leadership program at Prince Mohammed bin Salman College of Business and Entrepreneurship in 2017. Last year Al-Jamea did the MIT Sloan Executive Education program specializing in cybersecurity for managers. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Who's Who Rumaih bin Mohammed Al-Rumaih, chairman of the Saudi Public Transport AuthorityMohammed Al-Shaya, president of Saudi Arabia's Jouf University

Saudi aid agency opens dialysis center in Beirut

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:41 The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) inaugurated the final stage of equipping the dialysis center at Al-Makassed Hospital in Beirut, in the presence of Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon Walid bin Abdullah Bukhari. Th
Saudi Arabia

Saudi aid agency opens dialysis center in Beirut

Sat, 2020-09-19 01:41 The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) inaugurated the final stage of equipping the dialysis center at Al-Makassed Hospital in Beirut, in the presence of Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon Walid bin Abdullah Bukhari. The executive director of Al-Makassed Hospital, Dr. Mohammad Badr, received medical supplies, equipment and shelter materials from the director of KSRelief’s office in Lebanon, Fahad Al-Qannas. The president of the Al-Makassed Islamic Charitable Society Hospital in Beirut, Dr. Faisal Sinno, thanked the Saudi government and people for their support of Lebanon, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Friday. Meanwhile, the center distributed 1,740 food baskets, weighing more than 128 tons for the Syrian and Palestinian refugees as well as the poorest Lebanese families, in a number of Lebanese cities, benefiting 8,700 individuals. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Center (KSRelief) Saudi aid agency continues Yemen relief projectsSaudi aid agency provides medical supplies to Yemen

Desalination tunnel project completed in Saudi Arabia’s Taif

Fri, 2020-09-18 20:45 LONDON: Work on the longest desalinated water pipeline tunnel system in the world has been completed, project coordinators in Saudi Arabia announced on Friday. The tunnel, which measures 12.5 kilometers long at a width of 8.4 meters,
Saudi Arabia

Desalination tunnel project completed in Saudi Arabia’s Taif

Fri, 2020-09-18 20:45 LONDON: Work on the longest desalinated water pipeline tunnel system in the world has been completed, project coordinators in Saudi Arabia announced on Friday. The tunnel, which measures 12.5 kilometers long at a width of 8.4 meters, will pump desalinated water to reservoirs in Taif to meet the demand for water in the governorate and in its villages in the southern Al-Baha region. The project, carried out by the Kingdom’s Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC), took 19 months to complete — starting with excavation work at Al-Hada mountains — and has shortened the distance of water reaching Taif by more than 40km. Makkah region officials tweeted about the completion of the project, which was completed ahead of schedule. SWCC said it was ready to receive water in its storage units in Taif and estimate that desalinated water will begin reaching Al-Baha region in the third quarter of 2021. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaTaifdesalination Why thirsty Arab region needs sustainable desalination techSaudi Neom megacity will have world’s first ‘solar dome’ desalination plant

Saudi candidate through to next round of WTO race

Fri, 2020-09-18 13:01 Saudi Arabia’s candidate Mohammad Al-Tuwaijri advanced to the second round of the selection process, the Geneva-based World Trade Organization said on Friday. Tuwaijri is among three women and one other man bidding to become the nex
Saudi Arabia

Saudi candidate through to next round of WTO race

Fri, 2020-09-18 13:01 Saudi Arabia’s candidate Mohammad Al-Tuwaijri advanced to the second round of the selection process, the Geneva-based World Trade Organization said on Friday. Tuwaijri is among three women and one other man bidding to become the next director-general of the WTO. The remaining candidates are Kenyan minister Amina Mohamed, former Nigerian Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, South Korean Trade Minister Yoo Myung-hee and British ex-minister Liam Fox. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Mohammad Al-TuwaijriTuwaijri4wto Saudi Arabia’s WTO candidate wants practical pilot at the controls

Saudi Arabia announces 31 more deaths from COVID-19

Fri, 2020-09-18 16:19 LONDON: Saudi Arabia announced 31 more deaths from the coronavirus and 576 new cases of the disease on Friday. Of the new cases, 58 were recorded in Makkah, 52 in Jeddah, 37 in Dammam, 35 in Riyadh and 33 in Madinah. The total number
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia announces 31 more deaths from COVID-19

Fri, 2020-09-18 16:19 LONDON: Saudi Arabia announced 31 more deaths from the coronavirus and 576 new cases of the disease on Friday. Of the new cases, 58 were recorded in Makkah, 52 in Jeddah, 37 in Dammam, 35 in Riyadh and 33 in Madinah. The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom increased to 308,352 after 1,145 more patients recovered from the virus. A total of 4,430 people have succumbed to the virus in the Kingdom so far. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: CoronavirusSaudi Arabia Saudi candidate through to next round of WTO raceSaudi education minister praises teacher continuing mission to educate while battling cancer

Saudi education minister praises teacher continuing mission to educate while battling cancer

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 11:05 Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Education, Hamad bin Mohammed Al-Sheikh, called to give thanks to school teacher Mohammed Al-Fifi who has continued to teach his students while battling cancer in hospital. The Saudi minister
Saudi Arabia

Saudi education minister praises teacher continuing mission to educate while battling cancer

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 11:05 Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Education, Hamad bin Mohammed Al-Sheikh, called to give thanks to school teacher Mohammed Al-Fifi who has continued to teach his students while battling cancer in hospital. The Saudi minister praised Al-Fifi’s efforts to educate students despite his chemotherapy treatment in hospital and wished him a speedy recovery. The Saudi minister thanked Al-Fifi during the video call and said he was a role model for those in the field of education. #فيديو |#منصة_مدرستي تجمع #وزير_التعليم والمعلم محمد الفيفي وطلابه..كلمات الشكر، ودعوات الشفاء؛ لمعلم لم يمنعه مرض السرطان أن يؤدي رسالته، ويعود للحياة بأمل وتفاؤل.شكراً لكل معلم ومعلمة على جهودهم المخلصة. pic.twitter.com/rd3KakFNF8 — وزارة التعليم - عام (@moe_gov_sa) September 17, 2020 Al-Sheikh also praised other teachers in the Kingdom for their efforts, calling the foundation of society. Al-Fifi, 37, is a third-grade Arabic language teacher at Abu Omar Al-Dany Elementary in Riyadh’s Al-Uraija Al-Gharbiyah area. In May, doctors told him they had found cancer in his lymph nodes, and he was admitted to the hospital soon after to begin chemotherapy. Four treatments later, he is doing well but faces a long, hard battle. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi educationcancer

Saudi tour guide’s labor of love showcasing Saudi Arabia's wonders to world

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 02:15 MAKKAH: For Saudi tour guide Khaled Al-Took a career helping to showcase the Kingdom’s natural and cultural treasures to the world has been more than just a job — it has been a labor of love. After more than two decad
Saudi Arabia

Saudi tour guide’s labor of love showcasing Saudi Arabia's wonders to world

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 02:15 MAKKAH: For Saudi tour guide Khaled Al-Took a career helping to showcase the Kingdom’s natural and cultural treasures to the world has been more than just a job — it has been a labor of love. After more than two decades in the role, he has not only become a walking encyclopedia on Saudi people, customs, and traditions but has also witnessed a seismic change in the country’s approach to home and foreign tourism. Opening up the Kingdom to tourists from around the world has been one of the cornerstones of the Vision 2030 reform plan to boost economic growth. And Al-Took has been a key player in the nation’s journey of transformation. Speaking to Arab News about his experiences in the sector, he said that the main mission of a tour guide was to execute the agreement signed between a travel operator and their customer. Khaled Al-Took “A tour guide has many responsibilities because they are effectively the ambassador of their country and region before the visiting tourists. They must represent that region and do their best to convey its true image,” he said. He added that tour guides played a significant role in shaping the whole visitor experience and must possess an array of skills to meet with tourist expectations. It was important for them to be familiar with program itineraries and timings and be able to pass on facts, figures, and stories about historic and cultural attractions. “Another feature that characterizes the tour guide, is their ability to depict the personality of the guest and know when to speak and when to remain silent,” he said. Al-Took pointed out that one of the aims of a good tour guide should be to help create lasting memories for visitors. It was their responsibility to do detailed background research on destinations and attractions in order to be able to pass on accurate information and informed comment. “The best way to shed light on the beauty of any tourist attraction is to present it as it is with all its genuine facts, leaving the final decision to the recipient,” added Al-Took. Saudi Arabia has unlimited tourism potential thanks to its beaches, islands, plains, mountains, and deserts along with its distinctive and unique cultural heritage and civilization, says Al-Took. (Supplied) His introduction to the job came about by pure coincidence more than 20 years ago. “I was passionate about internal travel and getting to know the cities and regions of my country. I was impressed by the cultural diversity and different environments we have. “So, I completely devoted myself to this work, driven by my desire to explore its depths and intensively learn about the ancient civilizations and their relationship to the present, as well as the monuments and effects that stand as a valuable witness to the richness of our civilization and culture. “Throughout my years in this work I have constantly been learning, and I am still learning and discovering. I am an insatiable learner. During every visit I make a point, whether alone or with tourists, to learn something new by unravelling new facts about something I perhaps had not noticed before or through remarks made by the tourists,” he said. Al-Took noted that tour groups often spotted fine detail that a guide may have missed. “God has created us in different tribes and races in order for us to meet each other, thus exchanging our respective knowledge. Through these trips, during which have I got to know many people from different cultures, many questions come to mind that I convey to my guests. They rejoice when we find a cultural or heritage meeting point between us. “During one visit, I found out through speaking to a guest from New Zealand, that there was a meeting point between indigenous people and Gulf culture in general and our culture in Saudi Arabia in particular, which was greeting by the touching of noses,” he added. Early in his career, the number of tourist guides in Saudi Arabia could be “counted on the fingers of one hand,” which meant tour operators employed them on a wide variety of trips including cruises, and day tours of Jeddah, Duba, Dubai, and Bahrain. “I also led trips specialized in tracking the ancient trade routes from the south of the Arabian Peninsula and Dubai to the Kingdom’s border with Jordan in the north, as well as following some routes heading east and south to the Saudi border with Yemen and Oman deep in the Empty Quarter.” Al-Took has also organized cultural trips in regions throughout the Kingdom, highlighting ancient civilizations, inscriptions, and spectacular rock structures. “I had the opportunity to collaborate with celebrities as well as other people from all nationalities, and all of them agreed they had a positive impression about Saudi Arabia since it is a large country holding a lot of unknowns. “Many people assert that the stereotype they know about Saudi Arabia quickly fades away on their first visit, and the deeper they go the more they discover that everything they had read in the press, old books, or reports from contemporary travelers was different from what they saw themselves. Saudi Arabia has unlimited tourism potential thanks to its beaches, islands, plains, mountains, and deserts along with its distinctive and unique cultural heritage and civilization, says Al-Took. (Supplied) “They often find that the stories they have been told are incorrect and quite opposite to their own experience on the ground. There is a cultural richness here and honest, welcoming people,” he added. Many Saudis, he said, were not convinced or aware of the potential of tourism in their country but one of the positives to come out of the COVID-19  pandemic was the opportunity for people to get out and about locally and learn more about the Kingdom’s natural and cultural attractions. “The Ministry of Tourism has played an instrumental role in highlighting these capabilities through a strong marketing campaign aimed at introducing Saudis and expats to these distinctive treasures,” he added. “Some people who visited the Asir region during this period were shocked and reported that what they saw competed with the likes of Europe, where they used to spend their annual vacations.” He pointed out that Saudi Arabia had unlimited tourism potential thanks to its beaches, islands, plains, mountains, and deserts along with its distinctive and unique cultural heritage and civilization.This fabric of different colors and tastes, he said, was a very marketable commodity. “The culture, civilization, nature and, above all, a generous population unique in its humanity, heritage, and patriotism, all together form distinct and attractive elements put into perspective by the COVID-19 pandemic. “I am confident that this emergence will be the beginning of a new destination, and strongly competitive, especially with the government’s orientation to make the tourism industry a source of national income in accordance with Vision 2030, which is not long away from being achieved.” Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Vision 2030saudi tourism Najran calls for young Saudi tourism volunteersAs Saudi tourism becomes more accessible, tour guides share their pride in assisting pilgrims

Registration dates announced for Saudi falconry contests

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 03:50 RIYADH: The Saudi Falcons Club has announced the registration dates for the “Al-Melwah” (falcon-calling) and “Al-Mazayen” (falcon beauty pageant) competitions at the third King Abdul Aziz Falconry Festival. Registr
Saudi Arabia

Registration dates announced for Saudi falconry contests

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 03:50 RIYADH: The Saudi Falcons Club has announced the registration dates for the “Al-Melwah” (falcon-calling) and “Al-Mazayen” (falcon beauty pageant) competitions at the third King Abdul Aziz Falconry Festival. Registration begins in Dammam on Oct. 25-26, in Hafr Al-Batin on Oct. 28–29, Sakaka on Nov. 1–2, in Yanbu on Nov. 4–5, and Jeddah on Nov. 7–8. Registration in Riyadh opens on Nov. 6 and continues until Nov. 21. The club said that the local breeding of falcons will be the part of final rounds in the “Al-Melwah” and “Al-Mazayen” contests, to promote the Kingdom’s falcon breeding farms. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi Arabia Saudi falconry festival takes off in Hafr Al-BatinSix winners in Riyadh falcon beauty contest swoop on $800,000 prize

OIC, Arab League unite for solutions to family problems

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 03:56 RIYADH: The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Arab League held the 10th session of the Arab Family Committee from Sept. 15-17 by video conference. The assistant secretary-general for humanitarian, social an
Saudi Arabia

OIC, Arab League unite for solutions to family problems

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 03:56 RIYADH: The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Arab League held the 10th session of the Arab Family Committee from Sept. 15-17 by video conference. The assistant secretary-general for humanitarian, social and cultural affairs at OIC, Tarig Ali Bakheet, called for joint action to find ample solutions to family problems taking into consideration the cultural, economic, social and educational dimensions, while focusing on combating domestic violence. He talked about the importance of these family and child-related social themes, particularly due to the unprecedented impact of measures to counter the spread of the coronavirus. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Organization of Islamic Cooperation, US officials explore ways to empower womenOrganization of Islamic Cooperation, Muslim World League sign deal to combat Islamophobia

Saudi cybercamp to train jobseekers in programming

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 04:05 A cybercamp to train jobseekers in the field of programming has been launched in Saudi Arabia. The Human Resources Development Fund (Hadaf), in cooperation with the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Dron
Saudi Arabia

Saudi cybercamp to train jobseekers in programming

Author: Fri, 2020-09-18 04:05 A cybercamp to train jobseekers in the field of programming has been launched in Saudi Arabia. The Human Resources Development Fund (Hadaf), in cooperation with the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones (SAFCSP), will run the skills initiative as part of the Tuwaiq Cybercamp training program. Fifty trainees will take part in the learning scheme which will provide information on iOS and Android app programming, individual mentoring sessions, and practical application with certified programming certificates. The accord also aims to provide support toward maintaining future job security. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi Arabia New cybersecurity campaign targets remote learning in Saudi ArabiaRemote staff ‘confidently’ make 90% of all cyber mistakes

SR1.7bn pumped into Saudi social security accounts

Fri, 2020-09-18 04:14 RIYADH: The Saudi Ministry of Labor and Social Development has deposited almost SR1.7 billion ($453 million) into the accounts of social security pension recipients in September. The undersecretary for empowerment and social insurance
Saudi Arabia

SR1.7bn pumped into Saudi social security accounts

Fri, 2020-09-18 04:14 RIYADH: The Saudi Ministry of Labor and Social Development has deposited almost SR1.7 billion ($453 million) into the accounts of social security pension recipients in September. The undersecretary for empowerment and social insurance at the ministry, Ibrahim bin Youssef Al-Mubarak, said the amount covers pensions, cash assistance for food and electricity bills, and cost-of-living allowances. The amount includes more than SR1.4 billion for social security pensions, SR192 million as cash assistance for food, and SR103 million for the electricity bills. Funds were sent directly to the bank accounts of beneficiaries. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s KSRelief to provide $200m in UN Yemen aid deals

Thu, 2020-09-17 18:28 RIYADH: The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSRelief) has signed deals to provide more than $200m of assistance to Yemen with United Nations aid agencies. The deals signed were with the World Food Programme (WFP), the W
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s KSRelief to provide $200m in UN Yemen aid deals

Thu, 2020-09-17 18:28 RIYADH: The King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSRelief) has signed deals to provide more than $200m of assistance to Yemen with United Nations aid agencies. The deals signed were with the World Food Programme (WFP), the World Health Organization, and the UN Higher Commissioner for Refugees.  The step comes within the humanitarian response plan for Yemen, and according to what the Kingdom pledged at the Yemen donors conference held virtually in Riyadh.  The deals include a $138 million donation from Saudi Arabia that will be used to provide food assistance for nearly 8.9 million people in Yemen as part of the humanitarian response to the crisis-hit country.   This will include the distribution of 81,963 metric tons of wheat flour, vegetable oils, legumes, salt and nutritional, preventive and curative supplements, fortified wheat and soy mixture, date biscuit and high-energy biscuit bars. The second agreement worth $46 million in aid includes developing health and environmental sanitation projects, as well as combating the coronavirus pandemic, and projects to combat malnutrition in Yemen. This agreement includes supporting 25 central hospitals in all Yemeni governorates. The third agreement includes a $20 million donation to support two projects. The first will shelter refugees and provide non-food assistance to the most vulnerable families and returnees to Yemen. The second project is to support the health response to the refugees and those internally displaced during the coronavirus pandemic. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaYemenaidUnited Nations KSRelief launches online portal to accept partnership requestsKSRelief sends plane loads of aid to Sudan amid floods and COVID-19 pandemic

Fire continues to blaze on Taif’s Amad Mountain, no casualties reported

Thu, 2020-09-17 19:44 MAKKAH: Saudi Civil Defense teams continued to tackle a fire on Amad Mountain in South Taif on Thursday. The fire broke out early Wednesday morning and spread rapidly due to strong winds and the number of trees in the area. No casualt
Saudi Arabia

Fire continues to blaze on Taif’s Amad Mountain, no casualties reported

Thu, 2020-09-17 19:44 MAKKAH: Saudi Civil Defense teams continued to tackle a fire on Amad Mountain in South Taif on Thursday. The fire broke out early Wednesday morning and spread rapidly due to strong winds and the number of trees in the area. No casualties have so far been reported. #WATCH: Saudi Civil Defense teams continued to tackle a fire on Amad Mountain in South Taif on Thursday, which spread rapidly due to strong winds and number of trees in the area #SaudiArabiahttps://t.co/Zhoy7mx7db pic.twitter.com/DYsHXnjK54 — Arab News (@arabnews) September 17, 2020 “The operations to put out and control the fire are still ongoing, and there are no injuries,” the Civil Defense said in a statement. One eyewitness, Bandar Al-Thaqafi, said the fire had spread widely — clearly assisted by the wind — and covered an area of approximately one square kilometer. “The dense trees that were greatly affected by August’s heat had a significant impact on the fire’s expansion,” he added. Volunteer firefighter Majid Al-Thaqafi concurred. “The thick trees and undergrowth contributed greatly to the fires that continue to rage, and volunteers tried to extinguish the fires,” he said, adding that the fire was spreading at the same pace as when it started, and had not accelerated. Amad Mountain rises more than 2,000 feet above sea level and is famous for its juniper trees. It is home to large numbers of livestock. The area is also known for other tourist attractions, including Hathwa’ parks and Al-Barda. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi Arabia Beirut fire brought under control after terrifying nationVIDEO: Blaze rips through Zaha Hadid-designed Beirut souks building

GEA announces concerts for Saudi National Day celebrations

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 17:30 RIYADH: A group of Arab superstars will feature at concerts in three Saudi cities in celebration of the kingdom’s 90th National Day.  A five-day program from Sept. 22 - 26 will feature concerts in the cities of Riyadh,
Saudi Arabia

GEA announces concerts for Saudi National Day celebrations

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 17:30 RIYADH: A group of Arab superstars will feature at concerts in three Saudi cities in celebration of the kingdom’s 90th National Day.  A five-day program from Sept. 22 - 26 will feature concerts in the cities of Riyadh, Dammam and Jeddah.  The General Entertainment Authority announced that the first concert, to be held under the motto “mettle to the top,” will feature superstars Rashid Al-Majed and Aseel Abu Bakr in Green Halls in Dammam.  The same day, Emirati singer Ahlam will perform at King Abdullah Sport City Stadium in Jeddah. On Sept. 23, Saudi singers Abadi Al-Johar and Dalia Mubarak will perform at King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah, while Iraqi star Majid Al-Mohandes will regale an audience at King Fahad Cultural Center in Riyadh in a night titled “Home”.  Egyptian stars Angham and Tamer Ashour will perform in Jeddah on Sept. 24. On Sept. 25, the audience will watch the performance of Rabih Saqr at King Fahad Cultural Center in Riyadh and Mohammad Hamaki at King Abdullah Sports City in Jeddah.  Egyptian pop star Amr Diab will also perform on the last day of concerts on Sept. 26. All concerts and events are organized by the General Entertainment Authority with strict safety measures to avoid the spread of the coronavirus. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi Arabia#SaudiNationalDay SFA urges Saudis to walk for National DaySaudi Arabia to ease COVID-19 international travel restrictions on Tuesday

Arab coalition destroys armed Houthi drone targeting Saudi Arabia

Thu, 2020-09-17 17:36 RIYADH: The Arab coalition intercepted and destroyed an armed Houthi drone targeting the Saudi city of Khamis Mushayt on Thursday afternoon.  The Houthis launched the drone at civilian targets but it was intercepted, coalition spok
Saudi Arabia

Arab coalition destroys armed Houthi drone targeting Saudi Arabia

Thu, 2020-09-17 17:36 RIYADH: The Arab coalition intercepted and destroyed an armed Houthi drone targeting the Saudi city of Khamis Mushayt on Thursday afternoon.  The Houthis launched the drone at civilian targets but it was intercepted, coalition spokesman Colonel Turki Al-Maliki said. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: HouthisYemenSaudi ArabiaKhamis Mushayt Arab coalition destroys Houthi armed drones, ballistic missilesSaudi director’s journey with drones yields amazing shots of ancient sites

DiplomaticQuarter: Saudi-Indian Business Network relaunch marks major expansion in Kingdom

Thu, 2020-09-17 02:11 RIYADH: The Indian Embassy in Riyadh hosted a relaunch of the Saudi-Indian Business Network (SIBN) at a virtual ceremony to mark fast-growing economic and commercial ties between the two countries. During the event, the Indian ambassad
Saudi Arabia

DiplomaticQuarter: Saudi-Indian Business Network relaunch marks major expansion in Kingdom

Thu, 2020-09-17 02:11 RIYADH: The Indian Embassy in Riyadh hosted a relaunch of the Saudi-Indian Business Network (SIBN) at a virtual ceremony to mark fast-growing economic and commercial ties between the two countries. During the event, the Indian ambassador to the Kingdom, Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, inaugurated the network’s website http://sibnksa.com/. In an address, the envoy said that following a significant strengthening of bilateral relations that had made India and Saudi Arabia key strategic partners, it was important and timely that business leaders from both countries worked closely under an institutionalized mechanism to further the relationship. Sayeed noted that the relaunch will lead to a nationwide expansion of the SIBN which had been successfully operating in Jeddah for many years. The new-look network will be opening additional chapters in Riyadh, Dammam, and Jeddah with a national executive and regional committees. The ambassador added that the expansion of the network was a necessity and long overdue, as economic relations between the nations had grown multifold and bilateral commercial activities had spread throughout the Kingdom. The network will consist of prominent Indian businessmen and professionals based in the Kingdom and their Saudi counterparts engaged with India, he said, adding that the organization aimed to provide a platform for the promotion of trade and commerce in different sectors and encourage two-way investments. He pointed out that the SIBN would also act as an interface to inform Indian companies of the vast opportunities being offered in the Kingdom and the same to the Saudi business community in India. SIBN president, Abdullah M. Al-Kassabi, who is also the CEO of Al-Musheera Group, thanked the Indian ambassador for his efforts to promote the network to a pan-Saudi level. He said the unique nature of the platform would help to boost collaboration between Indian and Saudi businesses, in the process enhancing bilateral economic relations. President of the SIBN’s Riyadh regional chapter, Khaled Al-Aboodi, a prominent economist with 35 years of experience working with government, multilateral development finance institutions, and the private sector, congratulated the embassy on the success of the launch ceremony and for adapting to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic situation. Mazen Batterjee, chairman of Batterjee Holding Co., who will now lead the regional chapter of SIBN in Jeddah, shared his experience of being connected with the network since 2006 and said its expansion will provide much-needed support to businesspeople in Saudi Arabia and India. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: DiplomaticQuarter DiplomaticQuarter: Pakistan envoy, KFCRIS chief discuss stronger tiesDiplomaticQuarter: New Bangladeshi envoy thanks Saudi leaders for their support

Saudi T20 launches ‘sustainable future’ webinars

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 02:20 RIYADH: Along with the Kingdom’s efforts to host the G20 summit in November, King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC), in partnership with the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, anno
Saudi Arabia

Saudi T20 launches ‘sustainable future’ webinars

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 02:20 RIYADH: Along with the Kingdom’s efforts to host the G20 summit in November, King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC), in partnership with the King Faisal Center for Research and Islamic Studies, announced the start of T20 Summit Season on Thursday. The season, which will run for about 40 days, aims to shape a future of prosperity, sustainability and global inclusion. As part of the season, 11 task forces will each hold a webinar to discuss key themes and recommendations developed by T20 Saudi Arabia task forces during the year. The webinars will offer insights and solutions to global issues, and gather local and international experts, and a number of civil society organizations. FASTFACT The season will begin with a webinar on global trade and end with a webinar on the coronavirus on Oct. 27, while the T20 Summit will be held from Oct. 31  to Nov. 1. “Despite the unprecedented time due to the coronavirus pandemic, the T20 succeeded in developing polices and recommendations virtually for consideration by G20 leaders during the next summit,” Hossa Almutairi, T20 Sherpa/representative, said. T20 groups will deliver policy options that can be adopted by G20 leaders on issues including climate and energy, migration, innovation and technology, economic development and food security, Almutairi said. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaSaudi T20 Saudi researchers join T20 summit in JapanSaudi T20 chair unveils priorities at conference

Saudi Arabia looks to close gender pay gap

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 02:25 JEDDAH: The Saudi Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development recently issued an order to ensure there is no gender-based discrimination in employees’ wages. It is the latest move to create an encouraging and saf
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia looks to close gender pay gap

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 02:25 JEDDAH: The Saudi Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development recently issued an order to ensure there is no gender-based discrimination in employees’ wages. It is the latest move to create an encouraging and safe work environment, provide decent and sustainable job opportunities for all citizens and address the challenges facing workers and employers. The ministry said that “the employer is prohibited from distinguishing between their workers, whether during the performance of work or when hiring or advertising it, such as sex, disability, age, or any other form of discrimination.” At the Misk Global Forum 2019, the Saudi energy minister, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, said that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman is providing all Saudis with equal opportunities. “We know that our women now are enabled, they have an education program,” he said. “We have equal pay for both men and women.” The move was widely welcomed by Saudis. Electrical engineer Mohammed Al-Ali told Arab News that it would encourage more women to join the workforce. “This decision is a step forwards towards equality for women. It encourages more women to be part of the workforce and will turn our economy into a prosperous one,” said Al-Ali. “Saudi Arabia, as part of its 2030 vision, is going through rapid changes towards a more inclusive society, where women and men work side by side with no discrimination.” Saudi admin assistant Rozan Al-Nahari said that women work just as hard as men, and this move would bring financial relief to many. “We spend the same working hours at the office, complete the same tasks and many of us try to prove ourselves in any establishment,” she said. “I’m very happy that all of the social reforms are so supportive of women.” Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaSaudi women empowerment Saudi woman barber brushes off tabooSaudis proud of female royal guard

Saudi education minister opens two digital colleges for women

Thu, 2020-09-17 02:31 RIYADH: Hamad Al-Sheikh inaugurated the first two digital colleges for women in Riyadh and Jeddah on Wednesday. The ceremony was held in the presence of the governor of the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC), Ahmed Al
Saudi Arabia

Saudi education minister opens two digital colleges for women

Thu, 2020-09-17 02:31 RIYADH: Hamad Al-Sheikh inaugurated the first two digital colleges for women in Riyadh and Jeddah on Wednesday. The ceremony was held in the presence of the governor of the Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC), Ahmed Al-Fuhaid. The colleges will provide specialized training programs for about 4,000 trainees in several fields. Programs on offer include network systems management, media technology, software, the Internet of things, smart cities, robotics technology, artificial intelligence and machine learning. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaSaudi education Saudi education minister hails online learning platform success despite glitchesEvent aims to modernize Saudi education system

Saudi workers to get digital skills upgrade

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 02:43 RIYADH: More than 5,000 employees in Saudi Arabia’s public, private and nonprofit sectors will be offered professional digital training as part of a program to build the Kingdom’s high-tech future. The move is part of
Saudi Arabia

Saudi workers to get digital skills upgrade

Author: Thu, 2020-09-17 02:43 RIYADH: More than 5,000 employees in Saudi Arabia’s public, private and nonprofit sectors will be offered professional digital training as part of a program to build the Kingdom’s high-tech future. The move is part of a Ministry of Communications and Information Technology “Future Skills” program, which aims to provide intensive training in digital domains, including data science, information security, communications and technology projects management, web development, artificial intelligence, information technology engineering and blockchain. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia to host first Mideast regional office of UN’s global tourism body

Author: Wed, 2020-09-16 15:39 DUBAI: The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has approved setting up a regional office in Riyadh to support the growth of the Middle East’s tourism sector as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic. Sa
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia to host first Mideast regional office of UN’s global tourism body

Author: Wed, 2020-09-16 15:39 DUBAI: The United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has approved setting up a regional office in Riyadh to support the growth of the Middle East’s tourism sector as it recovers from the coronavirus pandemic. Saudi Tourism Minister Ahmed Al-Khateeb said the UNWTO’s Executive Council members have approved the move to establish the office during a session in Georgia, business news website Zawya has reported. The office will cover 13 countries within the region, and will serve as a platform to build long-term growth in the travel and tourism sector of the Middle East. “International cooperation and the role of the UNWTO are more important than ever. I am therefore very excited that Saudi Arabia will become home to the first ever UNWTO Regional Office, which aims to support growth at a national and regional level,” Al-Khateeb said. The Saudi minister added how important tourism is in the Kingdom’s vision and national strategy. “In Saudi Arabia, we are very aware of the transformative power of tourism on the economy and people. We may still be a young destination, but tourism is at the forefront of Saudi Arabia’s vision for the future,” he said. The Kingdom’s Ministry of Tourism and UNWTO have both been working together to design recovery strategies for the hard-hit sector. Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: tourismUNUN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Netflix exec on the 5-year partnership with Saudi animation studio MyrkottSaudi authorities take steps to strengthen agriculture sector

Saudi Arabia’s WTO candidate wants practical pilot at the controls

Wed, 2020-09-16 16:37 GENEVA: The World Trade Organization has ground to a halt and needs a pragmatic new director-general to drive through reforms, the Saudi candidate for the job said on Wednesday. Mohammad Al-Tuwaijri, 53, said the WTO, which was founde
Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia’s WTO candidate wants practical pilot at the controls

Wed, 2020-09-16 16:37 GENEVA: The World Trade Organization has ground to a halt and needs a pragmatic new director-general to drive through reforms, the Saudi candidate for the job said on Wednesday. Mohammad Al-Tuwaijri, 53, said the WTO, which was founded in 1995, was due a shake-up. “Twenty-five years; in my mind, every organisation in the world -- regardless of the external environment, which is severe in our case -- must have the fresh restart,” he told the Geneva Press Club. Al-Tuwaijri is one of eight candidates in the running to replace Roberto Azevedo. The Brazilian career diplomat quit the WTO helm at the end of August, a year before his second term was due to expire. Three candidates will get the chop on Friday as WTO member states narrow down the field. A former air force pilot who flew more than 30 Gulf War missions, Al-Tuwaijri was a banker who ran JPMorgan's fledgling Saudi Arabia operations before joining HSBC. The former Saudi economy minister currently advises the Kingdom's royal court on economic strategy. The WTO is in paralysis due to the trade war between the United States and China, US President Donald Trump's mistrust of the global trade body and, according to Tuwaijri, a lack of re-evaluation within the organisation itself. “Hence my approach is around practical leadership,” he said. “We need to really listen to members, but be very impartial, give ideas... gradual progress: we cannot have a switch on, switch off.” Main category: Saudi ArabiaTags: Saudi ArabiaMohammed Al-TuwaijriTuwaijri4wto Saudi Arabia submits Mohammed Al-Tuwaijri as candidate to head WTO