Cabinet endorses law to ensure fair competition

Updated 12 August 2013

Cabinet endorses law to ensure fair competition

The Council of Ministers chaired by Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, endorsed on Tuesday a new law to promote fair competition.
The Cabinet amended the organization’s name to “the Competition Council,” announcing the body’s legal objectivity as well as its administrative and financial independence. Based in Riyadh, it will have the right to set up offices in the Kingdom’s regions.
The Cabinet also decided to reshuffle the council, which will be chaired by the Minister of Commerce and Industry. It will have representatives from the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Economy and Planning, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, and the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority, in addition to four experts.
“The council will control and supervise competition and will have a number of tasks and functions. In addition, it will adopt draft plans, policies and regulations regarding competition according to the applied statutory procedures,” according to a statement from the Cabinet.
The council will monitor the market to ensure the application of the rules of fair competition. It will approve measures of investigation, search and collection of evidence to detect unfair competition based on complaints or on the initiative of the board.
“It will also spread a culture of competition and enhance public awareness about the rights guaranteed by the law and will establish an interactive channel with the community through the Internet,” the Cabinet reported.
Meanwhile, Interior Minister Prince Muhammad bin Naif briefed the Cabinet on the outcome of the 20th annual meeting of regional governors in Jeddah.
While reviewing the latest regional and international developments, Cabinet members stressed the need to end all kinds of genocide against Syrian people perpetrated by Bashar Assad’s regime, describing it as the worst form of human rights violation.
The Minister of Civil Service has been authorized to discuss with the Moroccan side a draft agreement for cooperation in the field of civil service.
The Cabinet also appointed Ali bin Abdullah Al-Salem administrative adviser at the Ministry of Defense; Saad bin Saleh Al-Wateed administrative adviser at the Ministry of Finance; Hadloul bin Hussein Al-Hadloul undersecretary for road affairs at the Ministry of Transport; Abdullah bin Ahmed bi Al-Tawi director of the Ministry of Social Affairs’ branch office in Makkah; and Mohammed bin Makni Al-Buqami director general of information technology at the Ministry of Social Affairs.
The Cabinet also expressed its condemnation of the terrorist bombing of a mosque in Bahrain while worshippers were performing night prayers, describing it as a sinful terrorist act aimed to destabilize the country and kill and terrorize innocent people.

Home alone: Saudis and expats try to beat the holiday blues

Updated 2 min 1 sec ago

Home alone: Saudis and expats try to beat the holiday blues

  • People celebrating Eid alone or abroad find ways to stay positive

JEDDAH: For different reasons many people living in the Kingdom have found themselves alone for the holidays due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, their spirits dampened as they are forced to stay home alone, away from loved ones.

As the pandemic enters its third month in Saudi Arabia, flights have not yet resumed, strict social distancing and safety measures are still in place and curfews have been reimposed to curb the spread of the virus during the Eid holidays.

Many families are stranded in cities across the Kingdom, while Saudis studying and working abroad are either stuck or have chosen to spend summer where they are out of fear they will not be able to return and start their new semesters.

Some people were able to move in with their families and quarantine together, while others were deprived of that chance.

A number of Saudi nationals, including students, have been repatriated in the past couple of weeks while others are still waiting for their turn.

Yousef Al-Ayesh, a 21-year-old senior student at Arizona State University, has been at home since late March as a precautionary measure.

He said that Eid with his family in Jeddah was one event that everyone looked forward to all year long. Under normal circumstances the first three days of Eid would be filled with events — family dinners at night and beach excursions during the day. Although he would be sleep-deprived, he would still make the most of the little time he spent with his family due to his studies.

“With all that’s going on, it doesn’t even feel like it’s Eid,” he told Arab News. 

“It most probably would have been different if I was back in Saudi Arabia but I still wouldn’t have been able to celebrate it the same way. It’s not that bad here (in the US) now since restaurants have reopened and my friends and I have the outdoors to enjoy, have a barbecue, or just hang out. I would have felt worse if I was alone. Ramadan was already odd enough, I don’t think I would have been OK if it were the case without them.”

Although his family lives 8,000 miles away he did not feel alone as his group of friends decided to celebrate together, even without the perks of new clothes and eidiyas from aunts and uncles.

It’s an exceptional year for us and one that is teaching us a lesson on various levels, but we must adapt either way.

Fareed Abdullah Fareed

Al-Ayesh hoped to be repatriated to the Kingdom soon and spend some time with his family after his mandatory quarantine.

Fareed Abdullah Fareed, a 29-year-old expat working and living in Riyadh, said this year’s Eid was tough without his family.

Although he is used to living alone because of his job, Eid was the one occasion he looked forward to the most every year because he got to travel to Cairo and be with his family.

“My family moved from Jeddah to Cairo about four or five years ago and Eid is a significant occasion in the family, Eid Al-Fitr is significantly more special than Eid Al-Adha even,” he told Arab News. “I look forward to traveling to see them every year since moving to Riyadh but wasn’t able to with the lockdown, so we all got together on FaceTime video call and spent the whole day speaking to family members.”

Like many expats, Fareed has spent the past months at home and said it was hard for him and his family but that communication had made the ordeal slightly easier.

“It’s an exceptional year for us and one that is teaching us a lesson on various levels, but we must adapt either way,” he added.