250 Saudi women to get jobs as part of SR500m project launched in Riyadh

Japanese Ambassador Norihiro Okuda, right, Unicharm Gulf Hygienic Industries Limited, Mahdy Katbe, left, and Takahisa Takahara, president and CEO of Unicharm Corporation, second left, seen during the launch of the program held at the Ritz Carlton in Riyadh on Wednesday. (AN photo by Iqbal Hossain)
Updated 21 April 2017
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250 Saudi women to get jobs as part of SR500m project launched in Riyadh

RIYADH: About 250 Saudi women will work in new manufacturing jobs as part of a major SR500 million-expansion program under a Saudi-Japanese joint venture.
Japanese Ambassador Norihiro Okuda, Mahdy Katbe, of Unicharm Gulf Hygienic Industries Limited, and Takahisa Takahara, president and CEO of Unicharm launched the project.
Katbe told Arab News that his company currently employs 73 local women, 30 percent of whom have special needs. In a bid to empower women, he said, women workers have been given all needed facilities and services and they are allowed to bring their infants and keep them at the site while they work.
Unicharm Gulf Hygienic Industries is a joint venture company between Al-Murjan Group and The Japanese Unicharm Corporation, a manufacturer and distributor of health products. Unicharm’s annual sales exceeds $2.5 billion.
Katbe said that his company maintains more than the 30 percent Saudi workers on its workforce, as required by the government.
The new factory will bring in the latest technology to produce diapers for babies and adults.
Okuda said that the bilateral relations between Japan and the Kingdom have been further stepped up following the recent visit of King Salman and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to Tokyo. He pointed out that the private sectors of the two countries are working together to help the Kingdom achieve its 2030 Vision.
The envoy estimated the bilateral trade to be in the range of $50 billion and the balance of trade in favor of Saudi Arabia since it exports oil and petro-chemical products to the value of $40 billion.
Saudi Arabia and Japan have become close strategic partners as well as strong allies with progressively growing commercial and cultural links, he said.
He said plans are underway to transfer Japanese technology on desalination projects to the Kingdom.


Green light for crown prince-led Saudi privatization program

Updated 25 April 2018
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Green light for crown prince-led Saudi privatization program

  • The Privatization Program is one of 12 key elements of the Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030
  • The program is aimed at increasing job opportunities for Saudi nationals

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Council of Economic and Development Affairs on Tuesday approved the Privatization Program that is one of 12 key elements of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. 

The program is aimed at increasing job opportunities for Saudi nationals, attracting the latest technologies and innovations, and supporting economic development.

It encourages both local and foreign investment in order to enhance the role of the private sector, with government entities adopting a regulatory and supervisory role. The aim is to increase the private sector’s contribution to GDP from 40 percent to 65 percent by 2030. 

The program will aim to reach its objectives through encouraging the private sector to invest in establishing new schools, universities and health centers, while the government pursues its organizational and supervisory role in health and education.

The privatization program aims to benefit from previous success stories, with the private sector’s collaboration in the development of infrastructure, and its involvement on a large scale in sectors such as energy, water, transport, telecommunications, petrochemicals and finance.

The program sets out a series of objectives in three areas: Developing a general legal framework for policies related to privatization; establishing organizational foundations and dedicated institutions to execute the policies; and setting a timescale for their delivery. 

The Council of Economic and Development Affairs is headed by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.