Fighting corruption is a must to achieve development goals, says Muslim World League chief

Mohammad bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa
Updated 11 December 2017

Fighting corruption is a must to achieve development goals, says Muslim World League chief

JEDDAH: Referring to corruption as a “black hole” that hinders the development process of a nation, Dr. Mohammad bin Abdul Karim Al-Issa called for confronting this menace in all ways possible.
Al-Issa, who is a member of the Council of Senior Scholars and secretary-general of the Muslim World League (MWL), was addressing an event organized by the Saudi Anti-Corruption Commission (Nazaha)to mark International Corruption Day.
He told the audience about the different meanings and kinds of corruption. Al-Issa described the extremists’ skewed interpretation of the religion as intellectual corruption.
“Corruption could also be moral,” he said, adding that financial corruption is often preceded by administrative corruption.
Al-Issa said our world is not programmed; it is a world of choice, test and free interaction. Hence, corruption is present and should be confronted in all ways possible.
He stressed the need to fight corruption to achieve development goals. “Fighting corruption represents a measure of development,” he said.
“That is why, there are competitiveness measures relating to many factors, many of which are related to fighting corruption, eliminating bureaucracy and enhancing transparency,” Al-Issa added.
He also referred to “compound corruption,” which involves practicing corruption and justifying it.
“There is a masked corruption, which involves calling corruption by other names, like tips, encouragement and special facilities, and the most dangerous type of corruption in this context is money laundering,” said the MWL official.
He noted that serious efforts in fighting corruption from the top had a positive impact on the. The Kingdom followed the way of the Prophet (peace be upon him) in fighting corruption at the top; for the Prophet (PBUH) said: “I swear by Allah that if Fatimah, the daughter of Muhammad, should steal, I would have her hand cut off.”
This sends a clear message that no one has immunity, Al-Issa said. “But if fighting corruption starts from the bottom, the elite may think they are immune.”
He stressed that only authorized bodies should talk about corruption cases based on evidence. Al-Issa also praised the Saudi authorities for their efforts in fighting corruption.

High-level investment forum aims to further boost business between Saudi Arabia and Japan

Updated 18 June 2019

High-level investment forum aims to further boost business between Saudi Arabia and Japan

  • Japan is one of Saudi Arabia’s most important economic partners

TOKYO: More than 300 government, investment and industry leaders on Monday took part in a high-level gathering aimed at further boosting business opportunities between Saudi Arabia and Japan.

The Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) welcomed key figures from the public and private sectors to the Saudi-Japan Vision 2030 Business Forum, held in Tokyo.

Hosted in partnership with the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO), the conference focused on the creation of investment opportunities in strategic sectors of the Kingdom. Delegates also discussed key reforms currently underway to enable easier market access for foreign companies.

Speaking at the event, Saudi Economy and Planning Minister Mohammed Al-Tuwaijri, said: “Today’s forum is a testimony to the success of the strategic direction set by the Saudi-Japanese Vision 2030 two years ago, which seeks to drive private-sector involvement, both by partnering with public-sector entities.”

SAGIA Gov. Ibrahim Al-Omar said: “At SAGIA, we have been working on creating a more attractive and favorable business environment in Saudi Arabia, which is making it easier for foreign companies to access opportunities in the Kingdom.”

Japan is one of Saudi Arabia’s most important economic partners. It is the Kingdom’s second-largest source of foreign capital and third-biggest trading partner, with total trade exceeding $39 billion.

JETRO president, Yasushi Akahoshi, said: “Saudi-Japan Vision 2030 has made great progress since it was first announced. Under this strategic initiative, the number of cooperative projects between our two countries has nearly doubled, from 31 to 61, and represents a diverse range of sectors and stakeholders.”

Since 2016, the Saudi government has delivered 45 percent of more than 500 planned reforms, including the introduction of 100 percent foreign ownership rights, enhancing legal infrastructure and offering greater protection for shareholders.

As a result, the Kingdom has climbed international competitiveness and ease-of-doing-business rankings, with foreign direct investment inflows increasing by 127 percent in 2018 and the number of new companies entering Saudi Arabia rising by 70 percent on a year-on-year basis in the first quarter of 2019.