US, Saudi Arabia join forces on public procurement reform

Updated 30 October 2017
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US, Saudi Arabia join forces on public procurement reform

RIYADH: The US Department of Commerce, in collaboration with the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA), discussed the Saudi government’s procurement system and the Kingdom’s ongoing efforts to align its procurement law with international standards.
The engagement is part of the Department of Commerce’s Commercial Law Development Program (CLDP) aimed at improving the business climate worldwide.
Over 130 legal professionals from the ministries of finance, energy, industry, and mineral resources, commerce and investment, the Board of Grievances, SAGIA, the Royal Commission for Yanbu and Jubail, as well as private sector attendees from various sectors of the economy participated in two-day event on Oct. 16.
During the event, US procurement law expert Charles McCarthy gave a presentation on the life cycle of a comprehensive procurement process. His presentation stressed the importance of implementing an effective bid process system, prompt payment upon completion of projects, and the submission of invoices.
Based on positive experiences in the US, McCarthy also emphasized developing and implementing a transparent, fair, and competitive bid process that meets international standards. He added that such a law is a crucial step in enabling economic growth and prosperity.
After the event, US Commercial Counselor Nasir Abbasi said: “The US Embassy extends its appreciation to all the Saudi participants in the program, and we reiterate our commitment to work with Saudi partners to continuously improve the business climate.”
The program is the latest CLDP event to occur under the overall US-Saudi partnership framework to improve the business climate in the Kingdom. In 2016, the CLDP assisted in the establishment of the Saudi Center for Commercial Arbitration (SCCA) to resolve commercial disputes in a fair, transparent and efficient manner.
In September 2017, the CLDP, in partnership with the SCCA, conducted a commercial arbitration workshop and trained over 50 public and private sector legal practitioners on commercial arbitration and alternative dispute resolution methods.


Pilgrims praise Saudi efforts during Hajj

Updated 21 August 2018
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Pilgrims praise Saudi efforts during Hajj

  • Pilgrims praise the organization of the Hajj ritual areas
  • Millions pass through relatively small areas to perform the rituals

ARAFAT: Pilgrims from around the world have expressed their gratitude for the services provided to them by the Saudi authorities, and praised the quality.
“Despite the small size of the holy sites area and the massive gatherings of pilgrims coming yearly to this place, Saudi Arabia has succeeded in managing the huge crowds,” said Jihad Obaid, an Iraqi pilgrim performing Hajj for the first time. The only thing he does not like is the hot weather, but the water sprinklers installed along the way have been a great help, he added.
“These sprinklers reflect how caring the Saudi government is,” he said. “We all know that man can’t control weather challenges, but the preparations made to protect pilgrims is a sign of the great efforts to help pilgrims carry out their rituals comfortably.”
Mas’ood BuHadji, from Algeria, thanked the security guards for the work they do for pilgrims.
“I would like to extend my thanks and appreciations to the security men who spare no effort in assisting the pilgrims to easily complete their rituals,” he said. “Although I am not Saudi, I feel proud of these Muslim security men, whose job here is not only to secure pilgrims a safe Hajj, but also offer them bottles of cold water.
“Hajj is now easier than ever; the Jamarat Bridge, the services and everything.”