20,000 houses ready for distribution in EP

Updated 31 October 2015
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20,000 houses ready for distribution in EP

DAMMAM: The Housing Ministry has announced it would soon hand over 20,000 properties to citizens in the Eastern Province.
Shaher Al-Sahli, general manager of the ministry in the Eastern Province, said that 13,000 beneficiaries in Dammam would receive apartments, land and loans, which would cover 35 percent of the waiting list in the city.
He said that the first stage of the ministry’s housing projects were completed in partnership with real estate developers. There have been a further 3,200 applications received by the Dhahran Exhibition Company.
He said the government has now completed its tender processes and contracted several real estate companies to start building homes for citizens. Some companies are on the verge of completing their projects, he said.
The first stage of the ministry’s rollout would include Dammam, Alkhobar, Qatif, Al-Ahsa, Hafr Al-Batin, Nairiyah and Abqaiq. He said the ministry is offering a wide range of options for citizens in the Eastern Province.
Al-Sahli said the second stage would cover about 65 percent of the waiting list, with the private sector playing a key role. “We are still holding workshops and meetings to attract developers ... to solve the housing crisis.”
In addition, the ministry said it is also making sure that nine projects that have been delayed for various reasons, are completed on time. He said about 100 citizens a day seek clarification on the ministry’s programs and apply for homes.
Eastern Province Gov. Prince Saud bin Naif said that the Al-Sharqiya Chamber’s real estate committee is currently helping to oversee the work and reporting to his office about the quality and pricing of the houses. He said the governorate does not interfere with the developers’ work.
Prince Saud said he had ordered the local ministry officials to ensure that the rollout timetable is finalized as soon as possible.


US’ Mnuchin says talk about sanctions premature, will visit Riyadh to meet with counterpart

Updated 21 October 2018
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US’ Mnuchin says talk about sanctions premature, will visit Riyadh to meet with counterpart

JERUSALEM, Oct 21 : US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Sunday it was premature to comment on possible US sanctions against Saudi Arabia for the death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi until an investigation had been completed.
Mnuchin said information so far on the investigation was “a good first step but not enough” as Riyadh faced increasing international pressure over what happened to Khashoggi, who disappeared after he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.
US President Donald Trump, who has said the United States would consider sanctions against Saudi Arabia, emphasized on Saturday that he was not satisfied with the Saudis’ handling of the case.
“It would be premature to comment on sanctions and premature to comment on really any issues until we get further down the investigation and get to the bottom of what occurred,” Mnuchin told reporters in Jerusalem.
Mnuchin confirmed that he would not attend a Saudi investment conference on Tuesday. However, he said he would visit Riyadh as planned for talks with his counterpart on joint efforts to counter terrorist financing and plans by Washington to reimpose sanctions against Iran in November.
“I did not think it was appropriate to go and speak at this conference but we continue to have important issues with Saudi and that is why I am going there,” Mnuchin said.
The visit, he said, was necessary as Washington prepares to reimpose sanctions against Iran.
He said he had no reason to believe that Saudi Arabia would renege on commitments to make up for any shortfall in global oil supplies as Iranian oil exports are curbed under the sanctions.
“I have no reason to believe that they are not going to honor those commitments,” said Mnuchin, who will meet Saudi Energy Minister Khalid Al-Falih while in Riyadh.