Burmese refugees to receive job training

Updated 27 March 2013
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Burmese refugees to receive job training

Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-Faisal yesterday distributed free residency permits (iqamas) to the first applicants of the Burmese community in a historic move to legalize the status of nearly 500,000 refugees in the Kingdom.
“This is one of the beautiful moments in my life,” said Prince Khaled while addressing a ceremony at Kudai near Makkah. He thanked Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah for issuing his instructions to correct the residency status of a huge group of expatriates who have been living in the Kingdom for several years.
“It was one of the first proposals I presented to King Abdullah after becoming the governor of Makkah,” Prince Khaled said to the applause of the large gathering including OIC Secretary-General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu and Burmese community leaders. “King Abdullah ordered the formation of a ministerial committee for the development of disorganized residential districts in Makkah to improve the situation of Burmese Muslims living in those districts,” he said.
“This is one of the unique experiments in the world,” the governor said, adding that the Kingdom has taken drastic measures to tackle the problem. “We are not just building new homes to develop these districts. We also rehabilitate some 400,000 to 500,000 people living there,” he pointed out.
Prince Khaled said the government would provide Burmese community members with health care, social services, education and develop their residential areas as part of a comprehensive program. “We’ll also train them to get jobs,” he pointed out.
Under the Labor Ministry’s Nitaqat (naturalization) program, the employment of four Burmese is equal to one foreigner. This incentive was given to encourage private companies to employ more Burmese to meet their labor requirements. “You cannot see such a comprehensive rehabilitation program anywhere in the world,” the governor said.
“This is an unprecedented incident in the world,” said Mohammed Tayeb, director general of the Foreign Ministry’s office in the Makkah region, while commending the government’s efforts to issue four-year iqamas to Burmese citizens free of charge and provide them with educational, health and social services.
Mohammed Rauf Rafi, secretary-general of European Rohingya Council in the Kingdom, said there are about 350,000 Burmese Muslims in Makkah, Jeddah and Madinah. Saudi authorities intend to issue iqamas to all Burmese within four to six months. He disclosed plans to open a media center for the Rohingyas at the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.


Saudi ambassador to UK visits BAE Systems HQ

Prince Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to the UK, toured BAE Systems’ academy and aircraft factories. (SPA)
Updated 24 min 53 sec ago

Saudi ambassador to UK visits BAE Systems HQ

  • BAE Systems is one of the world’s largest aerospace, science and technology companies

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to the UK Prince Khalid bin Bandar bin Sultan visited the headquarters of BAE Systems in the north of England on Thursday.
Prince Khalid was received by the company’s chairman, Sir Roger Martyn Carr, its CEO in Britain, Charles Woodburn, and Andy Carr, the managing director and CEO of BAE Systems in the Kingdom.
The ambassador toured the company’s academy, where he met with Saudi trainees and employees of BAE Systems in the UK.
He praised their roles in the technology transfer and settlement programs, which are part of the company’s support for Saudi Vision 2030.
Prince Khalid said the company offers “a comprehensive system to transfer technology and knowledge to Saudi Arabia,” and to qualify Saudi youth to work with that technology and knowledge locally.
These efforts have resulted in the successful assembly of the first training jet aircraft in Saudi Arabia, which was launched earlier this year by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, deputy prime minister and minister of defense.
Prince Khalid also visited BAE’s Typhoon and Hawk aircraft factories, as well as its “Factory of the Future,” which develops cutting-edge defense system technology.
Prince Khalid was briefed on the company’s plans and strategies in Saudi Arabia, where BAE has a long-standing partnership of more than 50 years with the Saudi Armed Forces.
BAE Systems is one of the world’s largest aerospace, science and technology companies.

BACKGROUND

• BAE Systems is one of the world’s largest aerospace, science and technology companies in the UK.

• It has made numerous contributions to the local manufacturing movement in the Kingdom, transferring many industrial engineering tasks to Saudi companies.

It has made numerous contributions to the local manufacturing movement in the Kingdom, transferring many industrial engineering tasks to Saudi companies.
BAE is also keen to encourage activities of interest to the community, including supporting social responsibility programs as part of its business system and not as charity works carried out by courtesy.
One example is the company’s partnership with a number of Saudi universities, with the aim of enabling students to meet the changing requirements of the labor market within the framework of Saudi Vision 2030.
Prince Khalid was accompanied by Saudi Military Attaché Air Commander Riyadh Abu Abaya; BAE’s director of engineering Ian Muldowney; the vice president for strategic planning for military and government affairs, Abdulaziz Al-Faraj; and director of human resources at BAE Systems in Saudi Arabia, Maaber Al-Awaji.