New PIF office bearers take oath of office

Pakistani Ambassador Khan Hasham bin Saddique and new PIF office bearers present an appreciation plaque to businessman Amir Shahzad, in Riyadh recently.
Updated 27 February 2018
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New PIF office bearers take oath of office

Pakistani businessmen Khalid Mahmood Raja and Khalid Chaudhry were sworn-in by Pakistani Ambassador Khan Hasham bin Saddique as president and chairman of the Riyadh-based Pakistan Investors Forum (PIF) respectively, at a ceremony here recently. The new PIF team also renewed their pledge to work tirelessly to strengthen trade and investment ties between Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.
Several other office bearers of the new PIF including Ghulam Safdar, vice president; Babar Shah, general secretary; Tanvir Mian, joint secretary; and Zahid Latif Sandhu, finance secretary also took oath of office.
Ambassador Saddique said: “There is need to increase Pakistani exports to Saudi Arabia, which amounts to a meagre $400 million annually.” This is insignificant keeping in view the two-day trade, which exceeds $2.5 billion annually, he added. In fact, Pakistan mainly imports oil and oil products from the Kingdom, which account for 90 percent of total imports from Saudi Arabia.
“The political and security relations between Riyadh and Islamabad are at a high strategic level, but our commercial relations are far below our expectations,” he added.
“The Pakistani economy is growing consistently and Pakistan’s GDP growth rate will be above 5.5 percent for 2017-2018 and 2018-2019 ... Pakistan continues with economic reforms and pursues policies that make the country compete better in global markets,” the ambassador said.
PIF President Raja said that the PIF works closely with the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) and the Pakistan Embassy. He called on the Pakistani government “to design and offer easy investment schemes for overseas Pakistanis.” Raja thanked the Riyadh-based “Knowledge Core” led by businessman Amir Shahzad.
Chairman Chaudhry said: “I am happy to be entrusted with this leadership position of the PIF that provides me with another avenue of continuing the work I have been promoting virtually all my life.” He said that “about 60 percent of the top 100 companies of the Kingdom have been headed and built by Pakistanis.”
Several appreciation trophies were also presented to leading investors, former PIF office bearers and promoters including Shahzad and Shamshad Siddiqui.
The Riyadh-based PIF is an association of Pakistani businessmen and investors. It has a total of about 400 registered members.


Saudi students to visit Huawei HQ in China

Huawei recently held a special ceremony for students participating in the program at the CITC headquarters in Riyadh. (Photo/Supplied)
Updated 17 November 2018
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Saudi students to visit Huawei HQ in China

The Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) is collaborating with Huawei, a global provider of information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure and smart devices, to launch Huawei’s fourth edition of the “Seeds for the Future” program. 

This year the Seeds for the Future program is expected to attract numerous projects from a wide range of universities in Riyadh, each with the potential to be selected for incubation. The initiative aims to develop ICT talent among Saudi students who will become tomorrow’s leaders. They will also receive focused mentoring from top Huawei executives and a chance to travel to Huawei’s global headquarters in Shenzhen, China, to gain exposure to the ICT solutions provider.

The company recently held a special ceremony for students participating in the program at the CITC headquarters in the Saudi capital. The event was attended on behalf of the CITC governor by Ahmed Al-Jarboo, vice president of corporate communications; Zhou Xinglong, counselor at the Chinese Embassy in Saudi Arabia; and Dennis Zhang, CEO of Huawei Tech Investment Saudi Arabia Ltd. 

CITC has been collaborating with Huawei since 2015 on Seeds for the Future. A total of 51 students have directly benefited as a result of the program, including through their visit to Huawei HQ in Shenzhen.

Al-Jarboo thanked Huawei for its efforts in “serving the community and its keenness on upgrading the Kingdom’s ICT sector.” He also urged students to benefit from the experience in expanding their knowledge.

Xinglong said: “This is another example of the close relationship we have with Saudi Arabia. I am proud of Huawei’s commitment to social responsibility and the important role played by this prestigious company in the development of Saudi youth.”

CEO Zhang said: “We are pleased to announce that we will continue to partner with the CITC for the Seeds for the Future in 2018. Saudi Arabia has a huge segment of young people and we are proud to announce our solidarity to empower these young people and give them the opportunity to sharpen their skills and help them become the leaders of tomorrow in the field of information and communication technology.”

He added: “Huawei is seeking to collaborate with government partners to develop an ecosystem for the ICT sector, and the key to this is to guide and support outstanding young talents in the field of ICT not only in Saudi Arabia, but to provide them with access to institutions to develop technologies that will help the Kingdom achieve its goals in its Vision 2030.”