Saudi Housing Ministry aims to increase rate of property ownership, improve real estate sector

A general view shows newly constructed residential buildings in Riyadh, in this April 22, 2013 file photo. (Reuters)
Updated 23 September 2017

Saudi Housing Ministry aims to increase rate of property ownership, improve real estate sector

RIYADH: The Ministry of Housing has launched programs and initiatives to achieve Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program (NTP) 2020.
The ministry’s directives aim to give citizens the opportunity to own properties, improve the performance of the real estate sector and increase its production, promote real estate offers, and increase productivity to provide real estate properties in good condition and proper prices. The ministry has launched this directive in an attempt to achieve one of NTP’s goals to increase the rate of property ownership to 52 percent.
The ministry has signed many contracts and conventions with banks, financial institutions and real-estate developers both locally and internationally.
The ministry has continued adopting projects to provide houses for those who are in need of housing support. Currently, 46 projects providing 13,793 housing units are under development in the Kingdom, nine of which have already been delivered in Riyadh, Makkah, Sharkiyah, Qasim, Jawf and Baha.
The ministry is also working to establish infrastructure to provide water, roads, lighting, gardens and spaces for schools and other projects for these units.
The ministry also aims to regulate the rental sector to ensure the rights of the rental parties (landlord and tenant), through a high-tech electronic platform.
One of the ministry’s programs aims to find solutions for the many challenges facing the rental sector, which represents half the housing sector in the Kingdom, in order to create a safe and sustainable housing environment.
The program also aims to reduce obstacles that delay projects and find a proper environment that attracts investments in this sector.

Saudi Arabia’s Mawid smartphone app offers coronavirus self-assessment

Updated 03 April 2020

Saudi Arabia’s Mawid smartphone app offers coronavirus self-assessment

  • Mawid helps users book appointments at 2,400 health care centers in Saudi Arabia
  • The service provided by Mawid is free of charge

The Saudi Health Ministry has introduced a self-assessment feature on its Mawid smartphone app amid the global outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), offering a consultation window for the public.

The feature includes a list of questions, guidelines and instructions based on the users’ recent travel history and their symptoms.

“Importantly, if you suspect you have COVID-19 symptoms, please download the Mawid app and use the self-assessment tool to get guidance,” said Saudi Minister of Health Dr. Tawfiq Al-Rabiah.

Consultation services have been provided for half-a-million people by the Health Ministry and around 250,000 self-assessment tests have been made through its Mawid app.

Mawid helps users book appointments at 2,400 health care centers in the Kingdom. The application follows the “Central Appointment System” that allows them to manage their referral appointments.

Launched in 2019, the app was launched as part of the ministry’s plan to implement digital transformation through technology.

The service provided by Mawid is free of charge. Once the user has downloaded the app, they will be required to sign in with their Absher username and password.

The user will be taken to another window and will be required to fill out the required information, where they will be able to see a self-assessment banner that takes them to a survey.

When the user has finished the assessment, they will receive guidance according to their symptoms.

Pakistani expat Talha Mohammad has been using the app to book appointments for his son’s vaccinations. “It is a really good app, and easy to use,” he said, adding: “The best part is that they send you reminders repeatedly which is perfect since I have trouble remembering appointments.”

Saudi citizen Fatimah Ahmed used the app for COVID-19 self-assessment with the help of her eldest daughter. “We went through the self-assessment process, answered the given questions and were given tips to follow.”

She was told to rest assured and visit the ministry’s COVID-19 guide for more information. “It is a good tool for other features, such as booking appointments and whatnot. However, I am very paranoid about the virus and when it comes to health, I am old-fashioned and prefer physical checkups to smart apps.”

The Mawid app is available for both Android and iOS.