No change in dependent fee structure in Saudi Arabia

The fees should be paid in advance and on a yearly basis along with the issuing or renewal of the worker’s residency permit, when issuing exit-re-entry visa or even final exit visas. (SPA)
Updated 02 January 2018

No change in dependent fee structure in Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: The General Directorate of Passports (GDP) has announced that foreign workers in the private sector will have to pay fees for every dependent or companion.
The directorate, known as Jawazat among expats, has posted a tweet on its official Twitter account stating that it was implementing a decision previously issued by the Council of Ministers.
It added that the fees for every dependent or companion must be paid through the SADAD payment system, which was established by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) as the national electronic payment service in Saudi Arabia.
In a clarification note received by Arab News via the directorate’s Lt. Col. Talal Al-Shalhoub, the Jawazat said the targeted dependents include the first wife, male children under 18, and all female children. It also clarified that the term “companions” entails the second wife, the third and the fourth, in addition to parents, relatives-in-law, domestic laborers and every expat sponsored by the worker.
As for the fees every expat worker has to pay, the directorate said these are applicable for every dependent and companion of all officially permitted workers in the private sector. “The fees should be paid in advance and on a yearly basis along with the issuing or renewal of the worker’s residency permit, when issuing exit-re-entry visa or even final exit visas.”
The authority made it clear that the worker should pay SR100 ($26.7) for every dependent or companion starting from July 1, 2017. It also gave notice that the fees would be doubled from July 1, 2018, and would reach SR300 by July 1, 2019. According to the same announcement, a single dependent’s or companion’s fees will hit SR400 in 2020.
The announcement also stated that no nationality would be excluded from the decision, and the fees are not refundable. It concluded that a worker could check the validity of his/her passport through the Interior Ministry’s “Absher” online services.


Startup of the Week: A Saudi Eco-friendly food waste startup brings value-added benefits

KAUST has been highly supportive of Carbon CPU, both technically and financially. (AN photos by Huda Bashatah)
Updated 21 January 2020

Startup of the Week: A Saudi Eco-friendly food waste startup brings value-added benefits

  • Aldrees: “Over 90 percent of food waste in Saudi Arabia is dumped into landfills”
  • Carbon CPU’s technology uses a specially developed, eco-friendly reactor to help convert food waste into fatty acids

Carbon CPU is a biotechnology startup specializing in turning food waste into fatty acids for use as livestock nutrients.

Launched through the post-graduate startup accelerator program (TAQADAM) of King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), the venture was co-founded by Bin Bian, Jiajie Xu, Yara Aldrees, Sara Al-Eid and Prof. Pascal Saikaly.

The idea behind the enterprise began to take shape in 2018. Al-Eid said: “Our aim was to recycle food waste into value-added products in a manner that matched the Saudi Vision 2030 strategy.”

Similar to most countries, Saudi Arabia has a food waste problem, but Carbon CPU thought of utilizing it in a way that caused less harm to the environment and also benefitted the animal feed industry.

“Over 90 percent of food waste in Saudi Arabia is dumped into landfills,” said Aldrees. “This produces a lot of gas, including methane, carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulfide and cycloaromatics, and contributes to global warming and air pollution.”

Water and soil were also being contaminated through leachate production, she added. “We’re trying to solve those issues, too.”

 

The team found that animal farms often struggled to provide enough feed nutrients for livestock such as cows and sheep. Al-Eid said there was a huge shortage of fatty acids, which are used as livestock nutrients and were in high demand from farmers.

“We’re trying to help animals live longer and be more nutritious,” she added.

Carbon CPU’s technology uses a specially developed, eco-friendly reactor to help convert food waste into fatty acids.

“We produce fatty acids from the food waste, extracting them through a liquid-liquid extraction system. The fatty acid oils are then used to help animal feed, as well as the feed and chemical industries,” said Xu.

KAUST has been highly supportive of Carbon CPU, both technically and financially, added Bian. “KAUST, especially the Environmental Biotechnology Lab led by Prof Pascal Saikaly, provided us with the facilities to set up our reactors. The KAUST Innovation and Economic Development department and the Entrepreneurship Center also gave us a lot of guidance on how to push our technology into the market.”

The startup initially faced many challenges that KAUST helped to resolve. As individuals coming from backgrounds mainly in engineering and science, the team lacked the know-how in business that its project needed.

“KAUST made up for our lack of business thinking through training on how to solve business issues and create business modules and find the right customers for our product,” said Bian.