FaceOf: Talat Hafiz, secretary-general of the Media and Banking Awareness Committee for Saudi Banks

Talat Hafiz
Updated 13 July 2018

FaceOf: Talat Hafiz, secretary-general of the Media and Banking Awareness Committee for Saudi Banks

  • With over 30 years’ experience in financial analysis and banking, Hafiz is responsible for enhancing banking knowledge in Saudi society
  • Hafiz gained a master’s degree in professional accounting from Hartford University, Connecticut, in 1984

Talat Hafiz is secretary-general of the Media and Banking Awareness Committee for Saudi Banks. 

With over 30 years’ experience in financial analysis and banking, Hafiz is responsible for enhancing banking knowledge in Saudi society.

On Wednesday, he led the first panel discussion at the 12th BMG Economic Forum in London under the theme “Business and Financial Environments in Saudi Arabia.” 

The BMG Economic Forum addressed wider investment opportu- nities in Saudi Arabia and the King- dom’s vision for the future.

“Saudi Arabia is the heart of the Arab world and an investment powerhouse,” Hafiz said.

British MP John Glen pledged UK support for the Kingdom’s comprehensive Vision 2030 plan.

Hafiz gained a master’s degree in professional accounting from Hartford University, Connecticut, in 1984. After graduating, he joined one of the leading commercial banks in the Middle East, the National Commercial Bank (NCB), and went on to hold senior positions including corporate branch manager and head of private banking. 

Hafiz worked as an assistant professor at King Saud University in the accounting department from 1977-1983.

He has also acted as CEO for United Assets Co., an investment and real estate development company.

An economic and financial analyst and columnist, Hafiz has hosted several economic and finance programs on the Saudi Television Network. 

Along with his responsibilities as secretary-general, Hafiz serves as a board member for the General Organization of Social Security, the Saudi Broadcasting Corporation and Baazeem Trading Co.


Two new academies to boost Saudi arts, heritage and music

Updated 19 August 2019

Two new academies to boost Saudi arts, heritage and music

  • One academy specializing in heritage and traditional arts and crafts will start receiving applications in autumn 2020
  • A second academy dedicated to music will receive 1,000 students and trainees from 2021

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia is to set up arts academies, including two in the next two years, offering a step toward academic qualification and enlarging the Kingdom’s footprint in heritage, arts and crafts, and music.

The initiative is part of the Ministry of Culture’s Quality of Life program. 

The minister, Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan, said investment in “capacity building” was one of the most important elements in encouraging the cultural sector, which enjoyed unlimited support from King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The Kingdom was rich in diverse arts, talents and artistic production, Prince Badr said, and the academies would be a first step toward academic qualification in the arts within the Kingdom.

One academy specializing in heritage and traditional arts and crafts will start receiving applications in autumn 2020, targeting 1,000 students and trainees in long- and short-term programs. 

A second academy dedicated to music will receive 1,000 students and trainees from 2021.

The music academy in particular will be “the core of music production and talent development in Saudi Arabia,” Saudi musician, composer and producer Mamdouh Saif told Arab News.

The music industry was a large and diverse field, Saif said, and education was crucial. 

“The academy is the right place to launch the music industry in Saudi Arabia, and it will have a significant impact on Saudi youth, and young people in surrounding countries,” he said.

He expects “a very high turnout” for the academy among young Saudis. 

“Due to my expertise in this area, I receive many questions from people who want to learn music, but through private lessons,” he said.

“But the availability of an academy for this purpose, that teaches music in a methodological way, will be the right start for those interested in music.”