Mohanud A. Helal, secretary-general of Saudi Arabia’s Economic Cities Authority

Muhannad bin Abdul Mohsin Hilal. (Supplied)
Updated 28 July 2019

Mohanud A. Helal, secretary-general of Saudi Arabia’s Economic Cities Authority

  • Hilal began his career at the Saudi Embassy in Washington
  • He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in management information systems

Mohanud A. Helal has been the secretary-general of Saudi Arabia’s Economic Cities Authority (ECA) since 2010.

Helal is a distinguished Saudi government executive with extensive experience in both the public and private sectors. 

For more than nine years as the secretary-general of the ECA, he has been instrumental in strengthening the profile of the organization by successfully overseeing the planning and development of several economic cities and King Abdullah Port, the Kingdom’s most visible example of a public-private partnership.

Helal’s role in the development of the operational model for King Abdullah Port has been instrumental as the port has gained international recognition for its rapidly expanding capacity, the business/industrial support environment developing around it and its state-of-the-art capabilities to handle the world’s largest vessels.

In addition to his role at the ECA, Helal’s responsibilities center on maximizing the tangible benefits of public-private sector cooperation in Saudi Arabia. As CEO of Cadre, Helal oversees a unique alliance between the government-owned company and the Ministry of Labor & Social Development that facilitates the issuance of work visas to investors within the Kingdom’s economic cities.

Helal began his government career with the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) as vice president of operations in 2008. 

Before that, he spent over eight years at Anglo-Dutch multinational Unilever. He joined the company in the customer development section and, after filling various strategic operational and business development roles, became its customer marketing director for Saudi Arabia.

Helal has participated in numerous leadership programs throughout his career and has actively engaged in many key governmental committees, allowing him to hone his expertise in the public-private domain.

He received a bachelor’s degree in business administration, followed in 1998 by a master’s degree in management information systems, from the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Helal recently headed an ECA delegation that visited the Virgin Hyperloop One (VHO) complex in Los Angeles, where, it was announced, the two would investigate the possibility of King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) hosting a hyperloop test track, research and development complex and a manufacturing facility.

The move follows an agreement between the ECA and VHO to carry out a feasibility study into KAEC’s Center of Excellence, which is expected to create 6,000 jobs in advanced technologies.

The study will explore joint development opportunities for hyperloop technologies that can be commercialized on a large scale, develop Saudi expertise in the field and speed up establishment of innovation complexes in the Kingdom.

“The ECA is constantly seeking strategic partnerships and initiatives to allow our economic cities to contribute to the ambitious objectives of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030,” said Helal.

Saudi envoy to UN affirms Kingdom’s support for regional peace, security

Updated 29 min 34 sec ago

Saudi envoy to UN affirms Kingdom’s support for regional peace, security

  • Israel and Iran are causing unrest in the Middle East, Al-Mouallimi asserts

NEW YORK: Saudi Arabia’s permanent representative to the UN has affirmed the Kingdom’s commitment to international law and regional security, stability and peace.

Addressing the UN Security Council, Abdallah Al-Mouallimi said the entire world recognizes the imperative of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

But, he added, Israel continues to procrastinate in implementing relevant UN resolutions, refrains from recognizing the national rights of the Palestinian people, and has continued its provocations, the latest of which was the storming of Al-Aqsa Mosque on Eid Al-Adha, “an attack we condemn in the strongest terms.”

Al-Mouallimi urged the Security Council to reaffirm by all means the fundamental principles of international relations, and to reject occupation, violence, oppression, incitement and sedition by Israel and Iran, which he said are causing unrest in the Middle East.

He added that the Kingdom is always working to encourage development in the Middle East, and believes that comprehensive development in the region is the way to achieve stability, eliminate terrorism and alleviate conflicts.

“The Kingdom always seeks to extend cooperation and commitment to dialogue in order to solve problems through peaceful means, but at the same time stresses that the calls for dialogue should be consistent with the cessation of threats and interference in internal affairs and hostilities, such as attacks on diplomatic missions and attempts to assassinate diplomats, cyberattacks on infrastructure, propaganda campaigns, fueling strife and sectarianism, and supporting and sponsoring militias and terrorist organizations,” he said.

“Without a practical cessation of these practices, any call for dialogue is just a facade and a tool to achieve the goals of expansion and domination.”