Saudi Cabinet minister highlights media’s powerful role in today’s world

Fahd Al-Mubarak, minister of state, left, with moderator Talat Zaki Hafiz at the Saudi Media Forum in Riyadh on Monday. (AN photo by Basheer Saleh)
Updated 03 December 2019

Saudi Cabinet minister highlights media’s powerful role in today’s world

  • People know about Saudi Arabia hosting the summit because of the media providing news updates

RIYADH: Fahd Al-Mubarak, minister of state and a member of the Saudi Council of Ministers, told an audience at the Saudi Media Forum that the media is central to information and plays a vital role in informing society about what happens in the world.

During a discussion on media opportunities for Saudi Arabia during a session on the G20 Summit, Al-Mubarak said: “We believe in the role of media all over the world, we get information from media and depend on it for solutions to issues.

“People know about Saudi Arabia hosting the summit because of the media providing news updates.”

Al-Mubarak, who has been secretary-general of the G20 Saudi Secretariat since 2017 and the Kingdom’s G20 sherpa since 2018, said: “We believe in three Cs: Coordinate, cooperate and communicate. Communication is the most important one,” adding that the media plays a vital role in informing society about what happens around us.

He said that the G20 is the premier forum for international economic cooperation and gathers the leaders of the largest economies of the world to discuss financial and social issues.

In the run-up to the summit, the presidency will host several meetings featuring ministers, senior government officials and civil society representatives.

The minister said Saudi Arabia has been a member of the G20 since its founding in 1999. He added that the organization is crucial for the discussion of policy pertaining to the promotion of international financial stability and that the Saudi Vision 2030 reform plans work in the same direction.

“Vision 2030 is an important reform plan and we are undergoing a transformation in alignment with G20 goals,” he said.

Saudi Arabia on Sunday became the first Arab country to assume the G20 presidency, taking over from Japan.

“Saudi Arabia taking over the G20 presidency from Japan is a very important development,” Al-Mubarak added.

The presidency will see the Kingdom host world leaders for a global summit in Riyadh between Nov. 21-22, 2020.

The Saudi presidency will focus on three aims: Empowering people through improving working conditions, safeguarding the planet by fostering collective efforts on food and water security, climate, energy and the environment, and long-term strategies to share the benefits of innovation and technological advancement.

The session was moderated by Talat Zaki Hafiz, secretary-general of Saudi banks’ media and banking awareness committee.

Earlier, Mohammed Fahad Al-Harthi, president of the Saudi Media Forum and Awards, sent a powerful message at the beginning of the session about the value of the media: “We believe in the freedom of journalism and its role.”


DiplomaticQuarter: US ambassador lauds Saudi Arabia for successful Hajj season

Updated 06 August 2020

DiplomaticQuarter: US ambassador lauds Saudi Arabia for successful Hajj season

  • The envoy also praised Saudi hospitality during the Hajj season

RIYADH: US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia John Abizaid has lauded the Kingdom for its successful and safe organization of the curtailed Hajj pilgrimage amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. 

The envoy also praised Saudi hospitality during the Hajj season and expressed his appreciation for the country’s generosity.

“On behalf of the US Mission to Saudi Arabia, I extend our best wishes to all Muslims in Saudi Arabia and around the world on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha,” Abizaid said in a statement.

He thanked the Saudi leadership for the care and services provided to the specially selected group of around 1,000 pilgrims of various nationalities allowed to perform Hajj.

“I would also like to express our deep appreciation to King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Mohammed Saleh Benten, and Minister of Islamic Affairs Sheikh Dr. Abdullatif Al-Asheikh for the government’s actions to protect the health of those participating in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. 

“I also extend our gratitude to the people of Saudi Arabia for their kind hospitality, friendship, and generosity during Eid and throughout the eight decades of our two countries’ close partnership. May the prayers for peace of all people around the world be heard,” he added.

Separately, the World Health Organization (WHO) also commended Saudi Arabia for its efforts in organizing Hajj.

WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus praised the steps taken by the Kingdom to ensure the safety of pilgrims and said the preventive measures had set an example for other countries to follow in working toward lifting COVID-19 restrictions.