MERS claims 2; 3 new cases recorded this week after lull, Saudi Health Ministry says

A Saudi man with protective mask speaks on his mobile phone in Jeddah. (Reuters file photo)
Updated 06 September 2017
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MERS claims 2; 3 new cases recorded this week after lull, Saudi Health Ministry says

RIYADH: The Ministry of Health this week recorded two deaths and three new cases of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS) after a brief lull.
A 36-year-old Saudi man died of the virus in Buraidah, while the new case, a 21-year-old Saudi female, was diagnosed with MERS in Dawmat Al-Jandal; her condition is stable.
A 69-year-old expatriate man died of MERS in Jeddah on Thursday, said the ministry, adding that two other people had recovered, a Saudi woman, aged 30, in Dammam and a Saudi man, aged 46, in Hail.
The ministry on Wednesday reported two new MERS cases, female citizens aged 18 and 22, in Dawmat Al-Jandal. Their conditions are reported to be stable.
Nine MERS cases were reported in Dawmat Al-Jandal in mid-August, and a total of seven patients are currently undergoing treatment in various hospitals in the Kingdom.
Since MERS first emerged in the Kingdom in June 2012, 693 have died, and the total number of recovered is 1,007.
The Ministry of Health has issued repeated warnings on how to avoid the infection and launched various campaigns to foster public awareness about the disease.
Those who work on farms are advised to take maximum precautions against the virus by wearing face masks, isolating infected animals and following the basic principles of hygiene.


Major projects, investments worth over $685bn unveiled on Saudi National Day

A photo taken on July 5, 2018, shows Bader al-Ajmi, 38,(L) owner of "One Way Burger" serving customers from his truck at a main street in the capital Riyadh. (AFP)
Updated 22 September 2018
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Major projects, investments worth over $685bn unveiled on Saudi National Day

  • The private sector’s contribution to the GDP at constant prices doubled to around SR1236.6 million in 2017

JEDDAH: A major economic boost in the form of 10 major projects and investments exceeding SR685 billion ($183 billion) were unveiled as celebrations of the 88th Saudi National Day got under way.
The Council of Saudi Chambers released a report focusing on great economic achievements in 2017.
These projects reflect the Kingdom’s vision under the wise leadership of King Salman and that of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to provide a brighter future through diversifying sources of national income, tackling environmental challenges and increasing investment and prosperity.
The report summarized the most important events and economic developments in the Kingdom over the past year. These include the lifting of the ban on women driving in June, and the establishment of the General Authority for Cyber Security, in addition to the numerous royal decrees providing financial support to Saudis.
It also noted the important decisions related to the Saudi business sector. These include the launch of a private sector incentive program with a value of SR72 billion, the privatization of 10 government sectors and the establishment of the General Authority for Real Estate. The private sector is still showing a strong performance as an efficient partner in the inclusive development process and in the achievement of the Kingdom’s 2030 Vision, the report noted, as it contributes 39 percent to the Saudi gross domestic product (GDP).
The private sector’s contribution to the GDP at constant prices doubled to around SR1236.6 million in 2017. There has been increased contribution to GDP from non-oil private sector streams.
The private sector also witnessed an increase in the number of workers, in its capital, in the number of shares on the Saudi market, in the cumulative number of establishments operating in the Kingdom, and in non-oil exports.
Continued growth of the private sector was attributed by the report to the Saudi government’s support. This support comes through initiatives such as the removal of obstacles to financial development, improvements to the working environment and policies adopted to boost investment.
It also reviewed the private sector’s efforts to support diversification of the economy and lower unemployment rates.
The importance of the measures taken to prioritize the employment of qualified Saudi workers over the employment of expatriates in the private sector were stressed, as well as the sector’s role in providing education and health services.