Bab Rizq Jameel creates record job opportunities in 2013

Updated 22 January 2014
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Bab Rizq Jameel creates record job opportunities in 2013

Bab Rizq Jameel (BRJ) Saudi Arabia, an initiative of ALJ Community Initiatives (ALJCI), generated 68,139 job opportunities in the Kingdom during 2013.
The number is yet to be independently verified by external auditors. 
This number was achieved in cooperation with the Ministry of Labour represented by the Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF), the Ministry of Social Affairs represented by the Social Charity Fund, the Saudi Credit and Savings Bank, National Commercial Bank (NCB) and other Governmental authorities.
The opportunities were created throughout the Kingdom via BRJ’s diverse job creation programs.
Reviewing BRJ’s 2013 results, Abdulrahman Al-Fehaid, executive director of BRJ Saudi Arabia, said BRJ has created 28,774 job opportunities during 2013 through its direct employment program Kingdom-wide, more specifically 16,577 for men and 12,197 for women.
This program matches job seekers and available positions in private sector companies, and hosts a database on BRJ’s website of qualified job seekers and participating companies.
Positions in high demand included customer service, sales supervisor, production worker, security guarding, accounting, sales representative, as well as technicians and other professions. Companies, which cooperated with BRJ during 2013, included Al Hukair, Kamal Jamjoom Co., Al-Shaia International, Buba Insurance, Jumaira Baskin Robins, Riyadah Co. Zain Project, Essam Qabani Co., Codu, Eastern Supplies Co., Al Marai, Crystal Factory, Al Rajhi Food Processing Factory, Al-Baik, Shami Factory, Soap Factory, Al Siraye Co., Nask, as well as several other companies.
The vacancies are only made available to job seekers after obtaining an official statement from the employers as per their validity.
According to Rola Basamad, general manager of the Female Employment Center in BRJ, the center has created 12,197 job opportunities within a large number of companies.
She said more women are approaching BRJ every day to be interviewed and apply for jobs.
The “Working from Distance” program created 3,399 job opportunities for women.
This is a new BRJ program, which lets women work without the need to go to the workplace, meeting the needs of their family environment, opening up new fields of employment, thus creates more job opportunities to satisfy demand.
The program offers several positions, such as in telesales and marketing, telemarketing, call centers, customer service, as well as other jobs.
The program was well received by candidates, as it provides jobs suitable to all ages, and saves the employee transportation costs, and leverages their time and energy.
University students and fresh graduates welcomed the program and several educational institutions supported the idea, such as the Girls Technical Colleges, Prince Salman Community Center, as well as several national training institutes.
Among the companies cooperating with the program are Avon Makeup, Beauty for Eve Factory, Delta, Mobily, Initial Red Impact and Unilever.
The goal to have more women working in factories has been another achievement this year, with a rise in positions dedicated to females including quality controllers, storekeepers, production workers, production line supervisors, machine operators and shift supervisors.
In addition, women are employed in factories in positions as female division directors, HR coordinators, coaches, security and safety supervisors and factory lab technicians
Yousuf Jastanya, BRJ general manager of the Riyadh area, said BRJ has created 29,625 job opportunities during 2013 through the productive household program.
Nora Aseeri, BRJ Female Division Manager in Riyadh explained that the program is based on a microfinance concept, which provides interest-free loans starting at SR 3,000 granted to a group of three to five women.
The program empowers the group members to start their own micro projects, such as in selling accessories, perfumes, perfume mixtures, wedding accessories, gift-wrapping, photography, tailoring and embroidery and other fields, which are mostly set up at home.
Nora said that by the end of 2013, the loan collection ratio reached 96 percent.
Through this program, BRJ facilitated the creation of 7,321 projects in the Western Province, 6,598 in Eastern Province, 5,823 in the Southern Province, 5,603 in the Northern Province and the Central Province with 4,280 projects.
According to Ahmed Muqalam, BRJ general manager of Madina, Yanbu, Tabuk, Hail and Al Ghazala, the small projects finance program created 2,812 job opportunities during 2013.
The program financed 568 small projects run by men and 2,244 by women.
The program provides young men and women, who have creative ideas but lack the financial resources, with interest-free loans of up to SR 200,000 to implement new or expand existing projects.
Muqalam said BRJ branches in the Western Province supported the creation of 781 small projects during 2013, followed by the 677 in the Central Province, Northern Province (514), Eastern Province (495) and Southern Province (345).
Ahmed Al-Zahrani, BRJ Manager in the Eastern Province announced that the training resulting in employment program created 2,145 job opportunities throughout the Kingdom during 2013, of which 698 were for men and 1,447 for women.
In this program, young men and women receive training to sharpen their skills in areas required by the labor market.
All training courses organized through this program result in positions within the private sector.
Training courses conducted during 2013 included mechanical, electrical and welding engineering.
Companies, which cooperated with the program, included Toyota, Hilton Hotels, Mabco Co., Morsal Village, as well as various other companies.
According to Tariq Maghfouri, BRJ manager in the Southern Province (Assir, Jazan, Bah and Qunfuda), the taxi ownership program created 579 job opportunities during 2013. In this program, young Saudi men own their vehicles after paying them off in instalments, and work as taxi drivers.
Ahmed Bashnaini, manager of the truck ownership program, said that during the same year, 462 young men benefited from this program which allows young Saudi men to own trucks, also after paying them off, using them to transport goods, vegetables, equipment and passengers.
As part of the BRJ activities and programs, the Nafisa Shams Academy for Arts and Crafts provided training for 2,070 female trainees during 2013 in different fields.
Jawaher Al-Zahrani, general manager of Nafisa Shams Academy for Arts and Crafts, stated that the academy organized diverse training courses, based on the requirements of the labor market.
The academy organized courses in tailoring, fashion design, cooking, photography, carpet production and secretarial work.
Other job opportunities were created for 343 women through the ‘Working from Home’ program, which is also supervised by the Nafisa Shams Academy for Arts and Crafts. Beneficiaries of this program produced around 95,101 prayer rugs sold to Toyota, Lexus and other public and private organizations.
Al-Fehaid said the employment opportunities generated aren’t necessarily the typical monthly-paid positions, but could be a long-term job, as much as a fixed compensation job, part-time work, be a business, such as a small project, self-employment, such as a taxi owner, or a sales person with commission, or any other available opportunity that could generate a sufficient and stable income for the beneficiary.
“At BRJ, we are seeking to create job opportunities for Saudis in cooperation with several Governmental bodies, such as the Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF), Saudi Credit and Savings Bank, Ministry of Labour’s offices, Social Charity Fund, Technical and Vocational Training Corporation (TVTC), Chambers of Commerce and Industry, as well as other public organizations which support our programs,” Al-Fehaid added.
“We at BRJ constantly develop our procedures to be as flexible as possible to ensure we can create the maximum number of job opportunities for young Saudi men and women through our 24 branches in the Kingdom. The branches are staffed with our team of 478 job creators, of which 251 are dedicated to our male, and 227 to our female, job seekers. By the end of 2013, the number of men and women who benefited from our existing loans reached 40,118. The total of loans granted in 2013 has reached SR 438,669,913, while the total of loans granted between 2003 and 2013 came to SR 1,655,972,997,” Al Fehaid added.
The 68,139 job opportunities created during 2013, represents a record of positions created in one year, since BRJ’s inception in 2003. With this record, the total number of job opportunities created since BRJ Saudi Arabia came into being, has jumped to 334,688 in the Kingdom.
BRJ is planning to create another 75,000 job opportunities during 2014.
An independent auditor has been assigned to verify and approve results on a quarterly basis.


Malaysia reviews China infrastructure plans

Malaysia’s former PM Najib Razak (AFP)
Updated 18 June 2018
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Malaysia reviews China infrastructure plans

  • Malaysia's scandal-mired former PM Najib Razak signed a string of deals for Beijing-funded projects, including a major rail link and a deep-sea port.
  • New Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has announced a planned high-speed rail link between Kuala Lumpur and neighboring Singapore will not go ahead as he seeks to reduce the country’s huge national debt.

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia has been a loyal partner in China’s globe-spanning infrastructure drive, but its new government is to review Beijing-backed projects, threatening key links in the much-vaunted initiative.

Kuala Lumpur’s previous regime, led by scandal-mired Najib Razak, had warm ties with China, and signed a string of deals for Beijing-funded projects, including a major rail link and a deep-sea port.

But the long-ruling coalition was unexpectedly voted out last month by an electorate alienated by allegations of corruption and rising living costs.

Critics have said that many agreements lacked transparency, fueling suspicions they were struck in exchange for help to pay off debts from the financial scandal which ultimately helped bring down Najib’s regime.

The new government, led by political heavyweight Mahathir Mohammed, has pledged to review Chinese deals seen as dubious, calling into question Malaysia’s status as one of Beijing’s most cooperative partners in its infrastructure push.

China launched its initiative to revive ancient Silk Road trading routes with a global network of ports, roads and railways — dubbed “One Belt, One Road” —  in 2013.

Malaysia and Beijing ally Cambodia were seen as bright spots in Southeast Asia, with projects in other countries often facing problems, from land acquisition to drawn-out negotiations with governments.

“Malaysia under Najib moved quickly to approve and implement projects,” Murray Hiebert, a senior associate from think-tank the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told AFP.

Chinese foreign direct investment into Malaysia stood at just 0.8 percent of total net FDI inflows in 2008, but that figure had risen to 14.4 percent by 2016, according to a study from Singapore’s ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute.

However, Hiebert said it was “widely assumed” that Malaysia was striking quick deals with China in the hope of getting help to cover debts from sovereign wealth fund 1MDB.

Najib and his associates were accused of stealing huge sums of public money from the investment vehicle in a massive fraud. Public disgust at the allegations — denied by Najib and 1MDB — helped topple his government.

Malaysia’s first change of government in six decades has left Najib facing a potential jail term.

New Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has announced a planned high-speed rail link between Kuala Lumpur and neighboring Singapore will not go ahead as he seeks to reduce the country’s huge national debt.

The project was in its early stages and had not yet received any Chinese funding as part of “One Belt, One Road.” But Chinese companies were favorites to build part of the line, which would have constituted a link in a high-speed route from China’s Yunnan province to trading hub Singapore, along which Chinese goods could have been transported for export.

Work has already started in Malaysia on another line seen as part of that route, with Chinese funding — the $14-billion East Coast Rail Link, running from close to the Thai border to a port near Kuala Lumpur.

Mahathir has said that agreement is now being renegotiated.

Other Chinese-funded initiatives include a deep-sea port in Malacca, near important shipping routes, and an enormous industrial park.

It is not clear yet which projects will be amended but experts believe axing some will be positive.

Alex Holmes, Asia economist for Capital Economics, backed canceling some initiatives, citing “Malaysia’s weak fiscal position and that some of the projects are of dubious economic value.”

The Chinese foreign ministry did not respond to request for comment.

Decoder

What is the "One Belt, One Road" initiative?

The “One Belt, One Road” initiative, started in 2013, has come to define the economic agenda of President Xi Jinping. It aims to revive ancient Silk Road trading routes with a network of ports, roads and railways.