Abdul Latif Jameel Motors has unveiled an initiative to support women’s driving schools across Saudi Arabia.
The company will provide 500 specially adapted vehicles ahead of the launch of women’s driving later this year. The driving schools, approved by the General Directorate of Traffic, will open in the coming weeks.
Abdul Latif Jameel Motors will also provide maintenance, spare parts and technical support to all vehicles as part of the partnership.
The partnership, called Together from the Start, was announced at an event in Princess Nourah Bint Abdulrahman University in Riyadh.
The program was attended by Maj. Gen. Mohammed Al-Bassami from the General Directorate of Traffic; Hassan Jameel, deputy president and vice chairman of Abdul Latif Jameel; and Nobuhiko Murakami, CEO, East Asia, Oceania and Middle East Region for Toyota Motor Corporation.
Hassan Jameel said: “Allowing women to drive is a significant milestone for Saudi Arabia and our society as a whole, and we are delighted to be playing a part in the process. Women driving will ultimately give them more mobility in every sense — logistically, socially and economically. At the same time, it will have a positive impact on the country’s development in the long run, which is a key pillar of Saudi Vision 2030.”
According to official figures, more than 20,000 women enrolled for driving schools in the first week of applications, with the number expected to rise exponentially in the coming months. As part of a broader agreement with the universities, Bab Rizq Jameel, Community Jameel’s job-creation initiative, will also be offering courses on women’s empowerment, small business development in the arts and culture space, as well as road safety initiatives.
The partnership aims to support the government’s drive to get more women into the workforce, contributing to the country’s economic development and diversification. Under Saudi Vision 2030, the government aims to increase women’s participation into the workforce from 22 percent to 30 percent.