Small firms struggle to stay afloat

Updated 08 November 2013

Small firms struggle to stay afloat

Forty percent of small construction firms in the Kingdom have stopped operating because thousands of expatriate workers were not able to rectify their status during the amnesty period.
The figures were released recently by Fahd Al-Hamadi, head of the national committee for construction at the Council of Saudi Chambers (CSC). “The seven-month time frame allocated for the correction process was not enough to rectify 20 years of errors,” said Al-Hamadi.
He said small firms find it extremely difficult to hire workers from outside, change their professions, or recruit from other construction companies. Larger firms recruit workers easily, he said.
Khalaf Al-Otaibi, president of the World Federation of Trade, Industry and Economics in the Middle East, said recently: “Forty percent of subcontracting small-scale construction businesses have stopped operating since the beginning of the inspection raids.”
Al-Otaibi said small and medium enterprises represent 75 percent of the entire construction industry in Saudi Arabia.


Reem A. Alfrayan, executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat

Reem A. Alfrayan
Updated 20 September 2020

Reem A. Alfrayan, executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat

  • Alfrayan received a bachelor’s degree in technical education and training, workforce development and education at Ohio State University in 2001

Dr. Reem A. Alfrayan has been the executive director of G20 Saudi Secretariat since January 2019.
Commenting on women’s empowerment in the Kingdom, she recently said on a TV show: “We’ve passed the stage of dreaming; with the help of Vision 2030, they’ve become a reality, we need new dreams now.”
She was the first woman to be appointed as assistant secretary-general at the Council of Saudi Chambers in September 2014.
Alfrayan received a bachelor’s degree in technical education and training, workforce development and education at Ohio State University in 2001.
In 2002, she earned a master’s degree in instructional technologies and media policy, and leadership from the same university.
Alfrayan obtained another master’s degree in educational leadership and organization, policy and leadership at the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2013.
She did a Ph.D. in educational leadership and organization from the same university in 2014.
After obtaining her first master’s degree, she joined the Arab Open University as instructional technology unit supervisor at its headquarters in Kuwait in 2003.
Between 2005 and 2006, Alfrayan served as a training specialist with a project launched by the General Authority for Tourism and Antiquities.
She then joined King Abdul Aziz Medical City as an administrative planning and processing development officer.
She also served as general manager of businesswomen’s affairs at the Council of Saudi Chambers from October 2007 to January 2010.
Alfrayan also actively participates in volunteer work.