Economic development council unveils transformation initiatives

Updated 26 December 2015
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Economic development council unveils transformation initiatives

RIYADH: As part of the Kingdom’s National Transformation Project, the Council of Economic and Development Affairs is currently working in coordination with government authorities to set in place a strategic implementation plan to increase national economic outputs and launch a series of economic regulations soon.

Officials met for eight consecutive hours at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Riyadh last week to discuss proposals and recommendations for initiatives of the National Transformation Project, which will be launched in the Kingdom in 2020.
The project will include programs for the evaluation of the performance of ministers, including execution of plans and meeting requested outputs.
During the meeting, ministers explained different sides and ideas related to the programs, while Deputy Crown Prince and Minister of Defense Prince Mohammed bin Salman responded to questions from attendees and described elements of the program.
The project will focus on implementing successful plans to limit the Kingdom’s economic dependence on oil alone, supporting long-term projects for the Kingdom, as well as increasing the performance of government, fighting corruption, increasing employment of Saudis, re-establishing priorities, equipping cities with the appropriate environment to realize national goals, and developing the health and municipal sectors.
Prince Mohammed bin Salman emphasized the Kingdom’s keenness to attract investment in mining by easing restrictions and obstacles, and dealing fairly with investors to find alternatives to the decreasing price of oil, as well as benefiting from the economies of Haj and Umrah by improving the basic infrastructure in the Kingdom to accommodate visitors.
Saudi authorities, in cooperation with experts from the United Nations, also worked on drafting 1,000 key performance indicators to monitor the performance of goals and policies in the 10th five-year development plan (2015-2019), with these indicators focusing on governance, bad practices and corruption.
A dashboard was also prepared to display statistics and reports to disclose the level of ministerial performance, as well as their level of compliance with realizing goals and policies set by higher authorities.
As for whether key performance indicators may involve any loopholes that allow for manipulation of information, a high-level source confirmed that the system is based on a “a higher state decision, not a sectoral one, and thus cannot be controlled by any implementing body,” noting that the dashboard will be a real challenge because it means ministries must improve their performance.
Meanwhile, other sources revealed higher authorities are taking a decision to form a national council to follow up on the performance of ministries, agencies, or authorities tasked with implementing the development plans. The key performance indicator regulations will be followed up by the prime minister via the dashboard display to address any faults in the performance of ministers, organizations, or authorities tasked with implementing developmental plans.
Key performance indicators will display and clarify data at the national level related to economic development, inflation, unemployment, and good governance, as well as the performance of ministries.


Major projects, investments worth over $685bn unveiled on Saudi National Day

A photo taken on July 5, 2018, shows Bader al-Ajmi, 38,(L) owner of "One Way Burger" serving customers from his truck at a main street in the capital Riyadh. (AFP)
Updated 22 September 2018
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Major projects, investments worth over $685bn unveiled on Saudi National Day

  • The private sector’s contribution to the GDP at constant prices doubled to around SR1236.6 million in 2017

JEDDAH: A major economic boost in the form of 10 major projects and investments exceeding SR685 billion ($183 billion) were unveiled as celebrations of the 88th Saudi National Day got under way.
The Council of Saudi Chambers released a report focusing on great economic achievements in 2017.
These projects reflect the Kingdom’s vision under the wise leadership of King Salman and that of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to provide a brighter future through diversifying sources of national income, tackling environmental challenges and increasing investment and prosperity.
The report summarized the most important events and economic developments in the Kingdom over the past year. These include the lifting of the ban on women driving in June, and the establishment of the General Authority for Cyber Security, in addition to the numerous royal decrees providing financial support to Saudis.
It also noted the important decisions related to the Saudi business sector. These include the launch of a private sector incentive program with a value of SR72 billion, the privatization of 10 government sectors and the establishment of the General Authority for Real Estate. The private sector is still showing a strong performance as an efficient partner in the inclusive development process and in the achievement of the Kingdom’s 2030 Vision, the report noted, as it contributes 39 percent to the Saudi gross domestic product (GDP).
The private sector’s contribution to the GDP at constant prices doubled to around SR1236.6 million in 2017. There has been increased contribution to GDP from non-oil private sector streams.
The private sector also witnessed an increase in the number of workers, in its capital, in the number of shares on the Saudi market, in the cumulative number of establishments operating in the Kingdom, and in non-oil exports.
Continued growth of the private sector was attributed by the report to the Saudi government’s support. This support comes through initiatives such as the removal of obstacles to financial development, improvements to the working environment and policies adopted to boost investment.
It also reviewed the private sector’s efforts to support diversification of the economy and lower unemployment rates.
The importance of the measures taken to prioritize the employment of qualified Saudi workers over the employment of expatriates in the private sector were stressed, as well as the sector’s role in providing education and health services.