Book discussion highlights Saudi successful programs, initiatives

Book discussion highlights Saudi successful programs, initiatives
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Book discussion highlights Saudi successful programs, initiatives
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Updated 21 February 2021

Book discussion highlights Saudi successful programs, initiatives

Book discussion highlights Saudi successful programs, initiatives

JEDDAH: The National Council on US-Arab Relations (NCUSAR) and US-Saudi Business Council (USSBC) hosted a webinar discussing a new book due to be published later this year titled “Saudi Arabia’s Transformation: Uncertainty and Sustainability,” which assessed the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 goals and objectives, successful programs and initiatives.

The book is written by Dr. Turki Faisal Al-Rasheed, adjunct professor at the University of Arizona’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) and Dr. Paul Joyce.

The discussion was moderated by Hall Delano Roosevelt, president and CEO of USSBC.

The participants analyzed and discussed the strengths, opportunities and challenges of Saudi Vision 2030 in support of the implementation of a global strategic long-term vision including the G20 goals and objectives, which was mainly focused on the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Al-Rasheed highlighted in his presentation that the Saudi leadership was experimenting with how to turn the country’s system of development plans into modern strategic planning.

Meanwhile, Joyce elaborated on the Saudi government’s approach to improving its strategic planning, its long-term visions and implementation of those visions, strategy in pursuing partnerships, and capability-building efforts.

Roosevelt made some final remarks on the USSBC’s role in Saudi development, where he stressed the council’s capability to help any of the attendees if they needed assistance investing in Saudi Arabia or partnering with Saudi companies to take advantage of the business opportunities discussed.

Dr. John Duke Anthony, founding president and CEO of NCUSAR, ended the session noting that the US has more investments in Saudi Arabia than any other country, and its companies have the most joint partnerships with Saudi companies.

The program concluded that strategic transformation and economic diversification is achievable through the creation of long-term strategic visions, backed by the government’s increased ability to implement policies for the benefit of the country in achieving Saudi Vision 2030 goals and objectives.

In the face of constraints and challenges like the collapse of oil prices and the current coronavirus disease pandemic, the Kingdom has demonstrated its determination to pursue its sustainable and strategic transformation into a diversified economy.

“Saudi Arabia’s Transformation: Uncertainty and Sustainability” will be published by Routledge and the University of California, Los Angeles, under the Center for Middle East Development.


Saudi authorities arrest 5 people in Jeddah for smuggling amphetamine, other illegal pills

Saudi authorities arrest 5 people in Jeddah for smuggling amphetamine, other illegal pills
Updated 15 sec ago

Saudi authorities arrest 5 people in Jeddah for smuggling amphetamine, other illegal pills

Saudi authorities arrest 5 people in Jeddah for smuggling amphetamine, other illegal pills

RIYADH: Authorities arrested five people for attempting to distribute a large quantity of amphetamine pills and other tablets in western Saudi Arabia.
Maj. Mohammed Al-Nujaidi, spokesman of the General Directorate of Narcotics Control, said the arrests occurred during security monitoring of smuggling and drug promotion networks targeting the security of the Kingdom.
Al-Nujaidi said authorities arrested four citizens and a Somai national violating the border security system, and seized 829 amphetamine tablets, other illegal pills and tablets subject to medical regulation, after they appeared in a video clip riding in vehicles without license plates in a neighborhood in Jeddah.
He add that initial legal measures have been taken against the two citizens, and they have been referred them to the Public Prosecution.


King Salman appoints new board to help SAIP become regional IP hub

King Salman appoints new board to help SAIP become regional IP hub
Updated 9 min 49 sec ago

King Salman appoints new board to help SAIP become regional IP hub

King Salman appoints new board to help SAIP become regional IP hub
  • Authority aims to be focal point for intellectual property in MENA by 2030

JEDDAH: King Salman has appointed several executives and government vice ministers to the board of the Saudi Authority for Intellectual Property to help it become a globally recognized IP hub for the Middle East and North Africa.

The appointments include Osama bin Abdul Aziz Al-Zamil, deputy minister of industry and mineral resources; Haitham Abdulrahman Al-Ohali, vice minister of communications and information technology; Hamed bin Mohammed Fayez, deputy minister of culture; Deemah bint Yahya Al-Yahya, secretary-general of the Digital Cooperation Organization; and Abdulrahman bin Abdullah Al-Samari, CEO of the Local Content and Government Procurement Authority.

Board Chairman Mohammed bin Abdulmalik Al-Sheikh and CEO Abdul Aziz Al-Suwailem expressed their gratitude and appreciation to King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for their support.

They also wished success to the board members as the authority seeks to establish itself as a focal point for intellectual property in the MENA region by the time the Saudi Vision 2030 is wholly implemented.

Al-Sheikh is a graduate of Harvard Law School and Saudi Arabia’s representative to the World Bank in Washington. In 2013 he was appointed chairman of the Saudi Capital Market Authority and two years later named as a state minister.

Al-Suwailem, who has served as an adviser to the World Intellectual Property Organization and UNESCO, is experienced in IP rights at the local and international level. He is also a former vice president of King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology.

The main tasks of the SAIP include developing a national IP strategy, proposing and developing relevant regulations and laws, and registering, granting and protecting IP rights.

It also raises awareness of intellectual property, provides information to the public, represents Saudi Arabia at international and regional IP organizations, grants licenses for IP activities, and comments on relevant international agreements.

Recently, the SAIP signed a memorandum of understanding with the Korean Intellectual Property Office, in the presence of the Korean President Moon Jae-in on the sidelines of the Saudi-Korean Investment Forum in Riyadh.

The agreement enhances the strategic partnership between South Korea and Saudi Arabia, and will involve the secondment of Korean IP experts to Riyadh.

SAIP spokesman Yasser Hakami told Arab News that the MoU laid out the framework, projects, timeline and procedures for the cooperative activities.


Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister discusses relations with Iraqi, Cypriot counterparts

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister discusses relations with Iraqi, Cypriot counterparts
Updated 25 min 8 sec ago

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister discusses relations with Iraqi, Cypriot counterparts

Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister discusses relations with Iraqi, Cypriot counterparts
  • Prince Faisal reviewed ways to develop Saudi-Iraqi ties
  • He congratulated his Cypriot counterpart on assuming his duties as foreign minister

RIYADH: Saudi Arabian Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan made a phone call to his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein to discuss aspects of Saudi-Iraqi relations, the Kingdom’s foreign ministry said on Thursday.
During the call, they also discussed ways to support and enhance ties to serve the interests of the two countries, and strengthening joint bilateral coordination to protect regional stability and preserve international peace and security.
They also exchanged views on many regional and international developments, the ministry said.
Meanwhile, Prince Faisal received a phone call from his Cypriot counterpart Ioannis Kasoulides, where he congratulated him on assuming his duties as foreign minister and said he looked forward to working with him in strengthening relations between the two countries.
Kasoulides said his country condemned the repapeted cross-border attacks carried out by Yemen’s Houthi militia against the Kingdom’s territory.
During the call, the two ministers discussed bilateral relations and efforts to enhance cooperation and coordination in various fields, as well as regional and international issues of common interest. 


King Abdulaziz Royal Reserve gets 100,000 new trees

King Abdulaziz Royal Reserve gets 100,000 new trees
Updated 27 January 2022

King Abdulaziz Royal Reserve gets 100,000 new trees

King Abdulaziz Royal Reserve gets 100,000 new trees
  • Afforestation project at Rawdat Tinhat oasis is part of a goal to plant 5 million seedlings by 2025
  • Reserve was established in 2018 to preserve vulnerable and endangered plant and animal species

RIYADH: A major afforestation project is underway in Rawdat Tinhat, with 100,000 trees planted in the first phase alone.

The scheme is being handled by the Cooperative Society of Moringa and Desert Plants after being approved by the National Center for Vegetation Development and Combating Desertification and the King Abdulaziz Royal Reserve.

The reserve’s CEO Maher Al-Gothmi told Arab News that the aim was to plant 5 million trees by 2025.

Rawdat Tinhat is one of the largest green oases in the Arabian Peninsula into which several valleys flow. Located about 180 km north of Riyadh, within the royal reserve, it is home to many tree and plant species, including acacias and daisies.

The afforestation project is one of several agreed by the center with environmental associations to plant trees and shrubs in parks, valleys and other areas in the Riyadh, Qassim and Hail regions.

The projects reflect the center’s efforts to support nonprofit organizations and community partnerships, and align with its aim to increase green areas and reduce desertification, leading to sustainable development and improving quality of life as part of the Saudi Green Initiative.

The reserve is working with the Special Forces for Environmental Security and other groups to plant 500,000 seedlings in seven stages that will be irrigated using the water harvesting method. The 100,000 seedlings planted in the first phase included ghaf, talh, al-rimth and al-arfaj.

The royal reserve was established in 2018 to preserve vulnerable and endangered plant and animal species, and provide access to the environment and natural resources. It encompasses Al-Tanhat, Al-Khafs and Noura parks, as well as parts of the Al-Summan plateau and the Al-Dahna desert, and covers about 28,000 sq. km.

Al-Gothmi said the reserve was working to increase vegetation cover and reduce desertification through various initiatives, including the use of drones to disperse 300,000 seeds of the wild sidr plant as part of the “Let’s make it green” campaign.

Ibrahim Arif, an environmental expert and former professor of forest sciences at King Saud University, said that one of the most important factors in the afforestation process was maintenance.

As well as having a specialist team to undertake the planting work it was vital to implement a maintenance program to ensure the success of the afforestation process, he said.

A successful afforestation project was an investment that could provide not only a food source for wild animals, but also opportunities for beekeeping and other activities of economic value, he added.

Arif emphasized the importance of planting seedlings, rather than more developed trees, as they had more time to adapt to their new environment and could cope better with temperature changes.


Fire breaks out at industrial zone in Riyadh

Fire breaks out at industrial zone in Riyadh
Updated 27 January 2022

Fire breaks out at industrial zone in Riyadh

Fire breaks out at industrial zone in Riyadh
  • Firefighters are working to extinguish the flames

RIYADH: A fire has broken out in warehouses at an industrial zone in Riyadh, Saudi Civil Defense said on Thursday.

Firefighters are working to extinguish the flames, it added in a tweet.