Saudi Geological Survey gets a new CEO

Saudi Geological Survey gets  a new CEO
Abdullah bin Muftar Al-Shamrani. (Photo/Twitter)
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Updated 01 December 2020

Saudi Geological Survey gets a new CEO

Saudi Geological Survey gets  a new CEO
  • The survey represents a key component of the mining strategy that forms part of Saudi Vision 2030

RIYADH: The board of directors of the Saudi Geological Survey (SGS), headed by Saudi Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources Bandar Alkhorayef, on Monday appointed Abdullah bin Muftar Al-Shamrani as its CEO.
Al-Shamrani thanked the SGS board of directors and vowed to serve the interests of the country and achieve the goals set by the Kingdom’s leadership.
Al-Shamrani obtained a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering at King Saud University in 1989. During his career spanning over three decades, he held several leadership positions in various companies such as the Arab Petrochemical Co., European Petrochemical Co., and the Jubail United Petrochemical Co. Saudi Arabia is collaborating with international partners to undertake a vast survey of the Kingdom’s mineral reserves, estimated to be worth $1.3 trillion.
The Regional Geological Survey Program (RGP) aims to conduct a series of surveys over the next six years that are set to provide new opportunities for international mining investors. SPA Riyadh
The plan has a budget of SR2 billion and is being driven by the SGS, which will survey an area of about 600,000 square kilometers across the geological formation known as the Arabian Shield.
The survey represents a key component of the mining strategy that forms part of Saudi Vision 2030. 


Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials

Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials
Updated 16 January 2021

Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials

Saudi Arabia’s first COVID-19 vaccine set for clinical trials
  • It will go through rigorous testing and several trial stages before it is approved for use by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority

RIYADH: Preclinical studies on the first Saudi vaccine against COVID-19 have been completed.

Professor of epidemiology Dr. Iman Almansour, who heads the team of researchers working on the vaccine at the Institute for Research and Medical Consultations (IRMC), affiliated with Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University (IAU), confirmed to Arab News on Friday that the studies were complete, and said clinical trials would begin as soon as “the proper approvals” had been given.

She did not specify when that is expected to happen.

The Ministry of Education is financing the team’s project. The team’s research paper has been published in the peer-reviewed journal Pharmaceuticals.

The vaccine is given to the body to build protein inside cells, which stimulate the body to produce immunity specific to the S antigen.

Dr. Iman Almansour, professor of epidemiology

According to the published paper, the vaccine has so far proven effective, when used on animals, in eliciting antibodies that will target the virus. “The vaccine is given to the body to build protein inside cells, which stimulate the body to produce immunity specific to the S antigen,” Dr. Almansour explained.

Dr. Turki Almugaiteeb, director of Healthcare and Life Sciences at RPD Innovations, which runs the National Vaccine and Biomanufacturing Center, told Arab News: “There is a great focus on the results of medical research because of the pandemic. Research can play a great role in developing a vaccine that can be adopted and further developed in the future. We can say that the Kingdom has a strong infrastructure, which can help produce and manufacture a national vaccine.”

Both Almugaiteeb and Almansour stressed that the experimental vaccine will need to go through rigorous testing and several trial stages before it is approved for use by the Saudi Food and Drug Authority.

Prof. Nasser Al-Aqeeli, the deputy minister of education for research and innovation, said the ministry supported programs at the Kingdom’s universities with more than SR500 million ($133.3 million) in 2020.