Saudi Arabia implements initiatives to improve business environment

Commerce and Investment Minister Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi. (SPA)
Updated 11 January 2019

Saudi Arabia implements initiatives to improve business environment

  • Tayseer working with more than 40 government agencies as well as the private sector
  • Tayseer currently working on more than 300 initiatives that aim to improve the business environment

JEDDAH: In 2018, Saudi Arabia implemented a number of initiatives and reforms that aim to improve its business environment and enhance its competitiveness.
In this regard, the Executive Committee for Improving the Performance of Private Sector Businesses (Tayseer), headed by Commerce and Investment Minister Dr. Majid bin Abdullah Al-Qasabi, monitored and implemented initiatives and reforms to provide a stable and motivating environment for the private sector.
Tayseer works with more than 40 government agencies as well as the private sector, represented by the Council of Saudi Chambers, under one umbrella to empower and develop the private sector.
Tayseer follows the most important international reports in order to improve the Kingdom’s regional and global rankings. They include the Doing Business report issued by the World Bank Group, and the Global Competitiveness Report of the World Economic Forum.
Tayseer is working on more than 300 initiatives that aim to improve the business environment. Following the launch of the Meras platform, starting a business now requires only one step and one day. It used to require 17 days and 10 steps.
Also, business and commercial visas are issued within 24 hours of a mission receiving the request, and commercial delegations’ visas are issued within two days. Previously, the issuance of commercial visas took several weeks.
Business visas do not require an invitation letter, and are issued within 24 hours of a mission receiving the request. Commercial visas through visa service offices are issued within 24 hours. For commercial delegations, the duration for visa issuance has been reduced from 30 days to just two.
The time required to begin receiving electricity services has been reduced to nine days through a two-step process, and compensation mechanisms have been developed to address cases of service interruptions or delays.
Regarding trade, the single-window platform Fasah has been launched to facilitate customs clearance and import and export procedures.
The Saudi Center for Commercial Arbitration was established to settle disputes according to the best international practices.


Worshippers flock to reopened Prophet’s Mosque for Friday prayers

Updated 06 June 2020

Worshippers flock to reopened Prophet’s Mosque for Friday prayers

MADINAH: Hundreds of thousands of worshippers attended the first Friday prayers to be held at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah since the gatherings were suspended to stop the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak.

The green light for the resumption of the prayer meetings came as part of a plan to gradually reopen the Kingdom’s mosques while ensuring worshippers and visitors adhered to preventive measures.

A ban on access to the Rawdah remained in place and only groups of worshippers numbering up to a maximum of 40 percent of the mosque’s capacity were being allowed entry.

Precautionary measures also included the allocation of specific doors for the entry of worshippers, the installation of thermal cameras, removal of all carpets so that prayers could be performed on the marble, sanitization of the mosque’s floors and courtyards, periodic opening of domes and canopies to ventilate the mosque, and the removal of Zamzam water containers.

The Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah will be closed after evening prayers and reopened one hour before dawn prayers. Parking lots will operate at 50 percent capacity and a media awareness campaign has been launched to highlight safety procedures at the holy site.

Medical teams have also been stationed at the main entrances to the mosque in cooperation with the Ministry of Health.

Elsewhere in the Kingdom, worshippers also flocked to perform Friday prayers at mosques amid strict health measures.

On May 31, Saudi authorities reopened all mosques for prayers, except in Makkah, as part of the Kingdom’s plan for a gradual return to normal life.

Last week the minister of Islamic affairs, dawah and guidance said that the country’s mosques were ready to welcome back worshippers, following his field trips to check that necessary preparations had been made.

All worshippers must still maintain a distance of 2 meters between rows, wear masks to enter a mosque, and Friday sermons and prayers have been limited to a maximum of 15 minutes.