Pakistani envoy to Riyadh praises Arab News’ bid to bring regions closer

Updated 09 February 2018
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Pakistani envoy to Riyadh praises Arab News’ bid to bring regions closer

JEDDAH: Pakistan’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Khan Hasham bin Saddique, has congratulated Arab News Editor-in-Chief Faisal J. Abbas on the launch of the newspaper’s Pakistan edition.
“I congratulate you (Abbas) and your team on the successful launch of the Arab News online edition in Pakistan,” said Hasham bin Saddique in a message addressed to the editor in chief on Thursday.
“The strategic significance of Pakistan, and the historic ties that Pakistan shares with Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, make it a very suitable choice for the launch of an international edition,” he said.
“It will play a key role in bringing together the two regions, specifically Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, and will enhance bilateral relations,” said the Riyadh-based ambassador.
“Arab News is an influential newspaper in the Arab world and has a wide readership across the globe,” said Hasham bin Saddique.
“The launch of the Pakistan edition will help in sharing the message of peace, goodwill and brotherhood to the world community,” he said.
“It will also improve understanding by the two countries’ populations, not only of their decades-old fraternal ties but also of their individual and joint efforts to achieve peace and security in the region,” he added.
“Modern digital media has a very significant role to play in bringing the world together for the common cause of the betterment of mankind, and I hope that you and your team will successfully rise to this challenge,” he said. 
“I also pray for your success, and wish that Arab News will reach new heights under your leadership.”
Pakistan’s Consul General in Jeddah, Shehryar Akbar Khan, lauded the role of Arab News in promoting bilateral relations through its media support. He commended Abbas and his team for the successful launch of the Pakistan edition.
Announcing the launch of the Pakistan online edition on Thursday, Abbas described the move as part of the newspaper’s ongoing global and digital expansion.
The service — available in English at www.arabnews.pk — covers news and views from Pakistan and the wider region, with a particular focus on Islamabad’s ties with Saudi Arabia and the Arab world.
Abbas said the new service aims to develop “a two-way conversation with an extremely important target market for us.” 
He cited the strategic significance of Pakistan, and the historic ties it shares with Saudi Arabia and the Middle East in general.
“Arab News is already a recognizable brand among many Pakistanis, given its deeply rooted relationship with the huge expat community in Saudi Arabia, where our newspaper was founded in 1975,” Abbas said.
“There are numerous shared ambitions, opportunities and areas of common interest between Pakistan and Arab countries, from religion and culture to defense and trade ties. All of these areas will be covered extensively by our new dedicated digital service.”


Women ready for top jobs in SCTH, says Saudi Arabia’s first female tour guide

Saudi women are keen to shoulder responsibilities in high-profile jobs. AFP
Updated 47 min 59 sec ago
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Women ready for top jobs in SCTH, says Saudi Arabia’s first female tour guide

  • Saudi Arabia’s first female tour guide, Maryam Al-Harbi, who was named as the best tour guide for 2017 by SCTH
  • There was still a need to have more departments at Saudi universities where female students could study archaeology

JEDDAH: A prominent female tour guide has called on the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) to grant women leadership positions as they are now “qualified to shoulder high-profile jobs” within SCTH.
Saudi Arabia’s first female tour guide, Maryam Al-Harbi, who was named as the best tour guide for 2017 by SCTH, told Arab News that Saudi women are capable of being appointed to leadership positions.
Al-Harbi was one of two speakers at a workshop held on Thursday night.
The panel discussion was part of the Makkah Economic Forum 2018 activities. The other speaker was Maria Mahdaly, a Saudi entrepreneur.
“It is true that any successful work needs the full collaboration of both genders, but women in Saudi Arabia have shown great interest in learning and developing themselves in the field of archaeology,” said Al-Harbi, who recently obtained an MA degree from King Saud University’s college of tourism and archaeology.
Besides speaking Arabic and English, Al-Harbi also speaks Turkish and is working on improving her Chinese language skills.
She guides visitors to Madinah, including private delegations, school students and university groups, as well as Umrah and Hajj visitors, and helps delegations visiting the provinces of Al-Oula, Madain Saleh, Khaibar, and Badr.
Al-Harbi said that there was still a need to have more departments at Saudi universities where female students could study archaeology.
“We only have one college for archaeology studies at King Saud University. This department offers only MA and Ph.D. degrees,” she said.
She added that students in many universities had not found jobs in the tourism sector so they opted to join other sectors such as education.

Language skills
The workshop discussed the importance of languages for tour guides. Abeer Abu Suleiman, first Saudi woman tour guide and moderator of the gathering, said that a tour guide needed to be acquainted with as many languages as possible, but English was a must as it is so widely spoken.
The gathering discussed Saudi Arabia’s rich traditions and tourism sites and highlighted the country's competence to host hundreds of thousands of visitors. They gave the Hajj season as an example of the Kingdom's ability to host gatherings of people from different cultural backgrounds.