New SME body ‘will generate jobs for Saudis’

Updated 29 October 2015
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New SME body ‘will generate jobs for Saudis’

RIYADH: The newly formed Public Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises approved by the Cabinet on Monday will help create jobs for young Saudis and boost the economy, according to experts.
One of the most important functions of the new body would be to facilitate funding for these small and medium enterprises (SME), they were quoted as saying by a local publication on Tuesday.
Saleh Al-Hassini, chairman of the Shoura Council’s economy and energy committee, said that the authority would remove several obstacles facing SMEs, which is crucial for the country’s economic growth.
Al-Hassini said that the authority would ensure that SMEs become more competitive and innovative, and attract investment. He praised the government for setting up this and other similar bodies and urged the Council of Saudi Chambers to support it.
Mansoor bin Abdullah Al-Shathri, a member of the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and head of the board of trustees of the Riyadh Center for SME Development, said that the authority would create employment opportunities for Saudis.
Al-Shathri said that expatriates made up 86 percent of the SME sector in the country. This goes against trends in other countries, and is preventing citizens from investing in the sector, he said.
He said that the authority would help grow the sector, which makes up over 99 percent of commercial firms in the country. It would oversee the sector and fulfill the goals of the government’s economic plans, he said.
The Cabinet, chaired by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman on Monday, set up the body, which will have financial and administrative independence, and be overseen by the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.
The authority would regulate and grow the small and medium enterprise sector in the Kingdom, so that it makes a substantial contribution to the country’s Gross Domestic Product, and create jobs, the Cabinet said in a statement.
The authority would also ensure financial support for the sector through the Saudi Industrial Development Fund, the statement said.


Saudi official reveals new details about Khashoggi case to Reuters

Updated 21 October 2018
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Saudi official reveals new details about Khashoggi case to Reuters

  • Saudi official told Reuters that journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s death was a result of a mistake from the negotiation team
  • The confusion of the negotiation team led them to cover up on the incident, the official told Reuters

DUBAI: The instructions of the head of the Khashoggi mission were based on a previous directive to negotiate the return of members of opposition, a Saudi official told Reuters in a report published on Sunday.

The source said that the primary reports on the mission were not accurate so they had to investigate further, and that journalist Jamal Khashoggi’s death was a result of a mistake from the negotiation team.

The confusion of the negotiation team led them to cover up on the incident, the official told Reuters.

The previous negotiation directive did not require the person in charge to obtain approvals from leadership, the official added.

According to the Saudi official’s reports to Reuters, primary findings showed that the death was a result of choking during at attempt to stop Khashoggi from raising his voice.

The negotiation team disobeyed orders, abused their authority and used violence, and there are 18 suspects in the Khashoggi case and they are currently detained pending an investigation, according to the official.

(Developing)