Saudi Cabinet backs crown prince’s ‘clear and firm stand’ of domestic and global issues

King Salman chairs the Cabinet session at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah on Tuesday. (SPA)
Updated 18 June 2019

Saudi Cabinet backs crown prince’s ‘clear and firm stand’ of domestic and global issues

  • The Cabinet echoes King Salman’s emphasis on the importance of moderate Islam
  • Ministers condemn Iranian-backed Houthi militias’ acts of terror

RIYADH: The Saudi Cabinet met in Jeddah on Tuesday, chaired by King Salman at Al-Salam Palace. 

Cabinet members reflected on an interview given by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and said his views conveyed a clear and firm stand of Saudi Arabia on multiple domestic, regional and international issues.

The Cabinet echoed King Salman’s emphasis on the importance of moderate Islam, and how it can overcome the risks posed by partisans and groups that divide the Islamic community through extremist ideas and acts of terrorism. 

The Cabinet welcomed the resolutions of the three summits in Makkah and their support and solidarity with the Kingdom and unlimited support for all measures being taken to protect its national security and oil supplies. 

 

READ MORE 

Saudi Crown Prince calls for decisive international position against Iran: interview 

 

King Salman also received the Makkah Declaration issued by the International Conference on Values of Moderation, organized by the Muslim World League, and approved by 1,200 figures from 139 countries, representing different schools of thought.

According to a report from the Saudi Press Agency, Minister of Media Turki Al-Shabanah mentioned the success of the three summits spent drafting the document, and the content of the final statement of the Makkah Declaration, including its position on various issues of interest to the Arab and Islamic worlds.

The Cabinet condemned Houthi militias, backed by Iran, for targeting civilians in an attack on Abha’s international airport. It also decried the attack on Khamis Mushayt.

Saudi Arabia renewed its condemnation of all acts of hostility and terrorism that threaten the freedom of navigation and security of oil supplies and environmental safety, including the terrorist attack against two carriers in the Gulf of Oman, calling on the international community to take firm action to secure the area’s shipping.

The Cabinet agreed to a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the Kingdom and Japan for cooperation on the environment. It also discussed MoUs between the Saudi Ministry of Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources and the South Korean Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy for cooperation in the automotive sector and the hydrogen economy.


High demand but no shortages in Saudi supermarkets

Danube is training staff in various regions throughout the Kingdom in picking and packing foods and other products, given the current fears sparked by the pandemic. (Shutterstock)
Updated 29 min 26 sec ago

High demand but no shortages in Saudi supermarkets

  • Commerce Ministry dealing with us closely to make sure people are getting what they want, says Danube co-founder

RIYADH: The Saudi Ministry of Commerce is checking stocks on a daily basis and monitoring prices to ensure there is no shortage of goods or rise in the cost of essential commodities, according to Majed M. Al-Tahan, co-founder and managing director of Danube Online, the hypermarket chain.

“We have full support from the Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Telecommunications and they are dealing with us closely to give whatever support we need to make sure people are getting what they want,” said Al-Tahan in an exclusive interview with Arab News.
He added: “In Danube Online, we are coping with it by scaling our operations every day, we are optimizing the packing, we are optimizing the routes, we are signing up with many delivery aggregators.”
“You can see that across all other platforms the demand is very high; people are trying to get all their deals through online platforms and all the players are trying to fulfill the needs as much as they can,” he said.

Majed M. Al-Tahan, co-founder and MD of Danube Online. (Supplied)


The response from customers was encouraging in the way that they were adapting quickly to online platforms, he said. Government authorities were asking people to stay at home and order through online platforms and delivery agencies as they were exempt from the 3 p.m. curfew measures.
On preparing staff to cope with the situation, Al-Tahan said: “We are continuously training and expanding the fleet.”
“We are having support from the scout groups through the Ministry of Commerce,” he said.
Danube was training staff in various regions throughout the Kingdom in picking and packing foods and other products, given the current fears sparked by the pandemic.
“We are in a very tricky business, we are trying to scale up with quality services and fulfilling safety guidelines,” Al-Tahan said.
“The online shopping experience is fully digital; we have stopped cash on delivery. We have stopped all our printed flyers and promotional materials and also replaced paper invoices with electronic invoices.”
“All these measures are to ease the operations and try to adapt as soon as possible because we don’t have time and need to comply with it,” he said.
Al-Tahan said that the hypermarket chain was dealing with very high demand.
“With Danube Online and the Danube app, in approximately the last 10 days we have seen average daily sales up over 200 percent and average order value up 50 percent compared to the same figures in February 2020.”

HIGHLIGHTS

• People are trying to get all their deals through online platforms and all the players are trying to fulfill the needs as much as they can, says Majed M. Al-Tahan.

• The response from customers was encouraging in the way that they were adapting quickly to online platforms, he says.

• Government authorities were asking people to stay at home and order through online platforms and delivery agencies as they were exempt from the 3 p.m. curfew measures.

Al-Tahan said that the number of app installations had jumped — nearly 400 percent higher compared to February.
“Trends wise, and what we have seen across our Danube Online product category sales (using similar dates as previously mentioned), the absolute top riser is body care, up by 461 percent, tissues and paper towels up by 160 percent, daily essentials up by 145 percent alongside a massive spike in beauty/personal care up by 208 percent and canned food up by 270 percent,” he said.
“Regular foods such as fruit and veggies are up by over 50 percent, dairy products are up by over 80 percent and cleaning and washing products are up by over 120 percent.”
He said that people were not panic buying or stocking up and buying in high quantities. “(They are) doing regular shopping as we see in the consumer’s behavior, having faith in retailers and assurances by the authorities,” he said.
Stocks were fully available, even of imported goods. He attributed the abundance of goods to the preparation people usually make for the holy month of Ramadan.
“This is the Islamic month of Shabaan, ahead of the holy month of Ramadan, so stocks are fully available and people need not to worry about it.”
Prices and stocks are being monitored regularly by the authorities to ensure stability in supplies according to consumer demand, he said.
“The Ministry of Commerce checks out stocks on a daily basis, monitoring the prices as well to ensure there is no spike in prices and shortage of goods,” he said.
Al-Tahan said that stores started online delivery after 3 p.m. due to regular offline shopping before the curfew hours.
Every retailer was committed to providing customers with essential products, he said, adding that the company was working as a partner in the retail business to serve customers, not as a competitor.
“We talk and work closely. We have our WhatsApp group, we do video conferencing and share our challenges to overcome it, and this is all to serve the people best.”