Schools in Makkah region closed Tuesday due to inclement weather

This photo taken in August shows heavy rain along a street in Makkah. (SPA)
Updated 20 November 2017
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Schools in Makkah region closed Tuesday due to inclement weather

JEDDAH: Schools and universities in Makkah region will be suspended on Tuesday because of expected severe weather condition, the General Directorate of Education in Makkah said Monday.
The decision to suspend classes in all school levels is for the safety of students, the directorate announced on Twitter.

A bulletin issued by the General Authority of Meteorology and Environmental Protection on Monday warned of inclement weather in various parts of the Kingdom, with sandstorms blowing all over Qassim and the western part of Riyadh region.
Education officials in Taif and Jeddah issued separate announcements suspending schools in all levels, also citing the weather authority's bulletin, according to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA). It said rain and thunderstorms are expected in Madinah and Makkah regions, including the coastal areas as well as over the mountains of Jazan, Asir and Baha regions.
Heavy to moderate rain associated with dust and sand storms also prevailed over Tabuk, the Northern Border, Al Jouf and Hail regions, the weather agency said.
In view of the expected rains, the Directorate of Civil Defense urged everyone to move away from places that are usually flooded and to avoid going near riverbanks.
Rainshowers generally attract residents in the Kingdom to go outdoors to enjoy, but the flood disaster of late 2009 had been traumatic to many particularly in Jeddah, where dozens of people perished, including some who were trapped inside cars that were swept away by floods.


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.