New Saudi industry and mineral sector ministry up and running

The ministry is headed by Bandar Al-Khorayef, who thanked the king and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their trust. (SPA)
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Updated 04 January 2020

New Saudi industry and mineral sector ministry up and running

RIYADH: A new ministry tasked with developing industry and the mineral resources sector in the Kingdom is up and running, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources began its functions on Wednesday. It was set up following a royal order issued by King Salman in August and takes on the jurisdiction, tasks and responsibilities related to the two sectors.

It is headed by Bandar Al-Khorayef, who thanked the king and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their trust. 

He said he would exert every effort to promote both sectors to achieve sustainable development in line with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 reform plan, which adopted industry and mining as ways of diversifying the national economy.

He also thanked Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, energy minister, and the Energy Ministry team for their support during the new body's establishment ahead of its launch.

Al-Khorayef said his team would continue to work on the implementation of the National Industrial Development and Logistics Program, which aims to transform the Kingdom into a leading industrial and mining power and a global logistics hub.

The program also seeks to support the private sector to play its role in industrial development, address the challenges facing investors in the industrial sector, as well as maximizing the added value of mineral resources across the Kingdom.

“We will go ahead with strengthening cooperation and integration between the industry and mineral resources system, in order to attract more domestic and foreign investment, as well as transferring industrial and mining knowledge to the Kingdom, employing the techniques of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to increase the competitiveness of Saudi products, in addition to cooperating with all concerned authorities to qualify national cadres and increase Saudization rates in the industrial and mineral resources sectors,” Al-Khorayef said.

He underlined the importance of supporting export operations so that Saudi products became an important part of the international economic system.

Saudi Arabia’s taxis go green

Updated 2 min 28 sec ago

Saudi Arabia’s taxis go green

JEDDAH: The minister of transport and chairman of the Public Transport Authority (PTA), Saleh Al-Jasser, launched a new, modern taxi project at King Khalid International Airport in Riyadh on Wednesday.
As a result of collaboration between the PTA and the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), taxis in the Kingdom, as well as gaining a new look and becoming more environmentally friendly, will now be equipped with electronic meter and payment facilities, as well as a supervised fare system.
Rumaih Al-Rumaih, president of the PTA said: “These new taxis are equipped with the latest technologies and features, and are aligned with public transportation systems.”
The launch is only one of numerous developments that aim to improve transportation, raise the quality of service for citizens and residents, and provide job opportunities in the Kingdom, added Al-Rumaih.
The newly implemented system states that vehicles can only become licensed taxis if they have operated for less than five years.
The green vehicles will be monitored and tracked to document quality of service and driver efficiency, equipped with screens that support both Arabic and English speakers in order to calculate fares, host driver information and provide a means to communicate with a command center.
They will be equipped with smart maps, free Wi-Fi, and a mobile app service that will hail the nearest taxi.
The new taxis will be appearing around major city airports, before becoming accessible on a larger scale over time as more taxis are licensed.