Commercial arbitration center to settle disputes

Updated 16 April 2014

Commercial arbitration center to settle disputes

The Cabinet has set up a high-level committee to establish a commercial arbitration center for local and international commercial and civil disputes, under the Council of Saudi Chambers (CSC).
“Its jurisdiction will not cover disputes concerning administrative, personal and criminal cases and where reconciliation is not permissible,” Culture and Information Minister Abdul Aziz Khoja said Monday after the weekly Cabinet meeting.
The CSC would form a board of directors in agreement with the Ministers of Justice and Commerce and Industry, and in coordination with the governor of the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority.
The chairman of the board must have at least 10 years experience in the private sector, with members to have five years, and they should not have occupied any government post or job. The board will approve the center’s regulations and prepare a list of arbitrators. The center will have branches inside and outside the Kingdom.
The center would represent the Kingdom in the field of commercial arbitration domestically and internationally in coordination with the Ministry of Justice. It would have a fund to provide arbitration aid, he said.
Referring to the new law allowing transfer of information, Khoja said the Ministry of Interior would launch technical measures to ensure the privacy of private enterprises and the confidentiality of information.

The law will be applied to private enterprises engaged in tourist accommodation facilities, leasing lounges, car rentals, buying gold and jewelry from traders, transport of passengers in the Kingdom and abroad, property rentals, sports centers, and the sale of vehicles with canceled registrations.
Khoja said the Cabinet also urged the United States to restart the Middle East peace process. It praised the decisions taken by Arab League foreign ministers on the Palestinian issue, and urged the US to pressure Israeli to abide by its peace commitments.
The Cabinet expressed concern over the deterioration of human rights in Syria, Myanmar and the Central African Republic, and urged the international community to stop all crimes against humanity. It stressed the importance of concerted international efforts to deliver humanitarian aid to needy people.
The Cabinet authorized the foreign minister to hold discussions with the Arab Tourism Organization to set up its headquarters in the Kingdom. It endorsed an agreement with Hungary for cooperation in science and education, and another agreement with Egypt for electricity interconnection.
The Cabinet appointed Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah Al-Mashaali director general of administration for financial and budget affairs at the department of general staff; Abdul Aziz bin Ali Al-Thuwaini undersecretary for rights affairs at the Ministry of Interior; Abdul Kareem bin Abdul Aziz Al-Aidan administrative advisor at Riyadh mayoralty; Mohammed bin Falah Al-Darran as minister plenipotentiary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs; and Safar bin Mushabab Abu Madini assistant undersecretary at the Ministry of Transport.


Saudi firefighters douse Al-Azizah forest fire, no injuries reported

Updated 15 min 16 sec ago

Saudi firefighters douse Al-Azizah forest fire, no injuries reported

  • A number of Ethiopian nationals had been arrested on suspicion of setting the forest on fire following a dispute, says Interior Ministry

RIYADH/ABHA: Saudi Arabia’s Civil Defense has put out a fire in the Al-Azizah Mountains in Alsouda Heights near Abha, the administrative capital of Asir Region.

According to Civil Defense’s Twitter account, the firefighters controlled the fire and prevented it from spreading despite the rugged terrain in which the fire broke out. 

Lt. Col. Mohammad Al-Hammadi, Civil Defense spokesman, told Arab News that firefighters made great efforts to reach the area where the blaze had spread using state-of-the-art equipment to contain the fire.

“No one was injured, thanks to the swift action of the firefighters who helped protect the vegetation of this area. The firefighters are working now to cool down the area and combing down the area to ensure the fire has been controlled and contained,” he said.

The Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture in Asir said that the Al-Maghda water plant was put at the discretion of firefighters to help them fight the fire, according to Abdullah Al-Wimni, the director of the ministry’s branch in Asir, and Muhammad Al-Haidan the director of the Department of Water Services in Asir. Both said in a statement that 20 water tankers were used by the Civil Defense firefighters.

The Ministry of Interior spokesman said an investigation into last week’s fire in the Ghulamah Mountains in Tanuma governorate, north of Asir, indicated that three border violators caused the blaze, which destroyed an area of more than 4.7 million square meters before it was brought under control by the Saudi Civil Defense team.

According to an Interior Ministry spokesman on Wednesday, the suspects were Ethiopian nationals who set fire to the area following a dispute and fled. They have since been arrested and referred to the authorities for legal action.

Tens of thousands of perennial trees — including wild olives, neems, junipers and acacias — some of which were more than 50 years old — were also destroyed.

The operation was carried out under the direct supervision of the Asir governor with the participation of all government and civil services, as well as teams from Al-Namas and Tanuma governorates.