Indian envoy, expats hail ‘crucial’ Saudi aid in virus battle

Indian envoy, expats hail ‘crucial’ Saudi aid in virus battle
The COVID-19 outbreak in India has claimed the lives of more than 300,000 people so far, primarily due to an oxygen shortage and a lack of hospital beds. (Social media)
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Updated 31 May 2021

Indian envoy, expats hail ‘crucial’ Saudi aid in virus battle

Indian envoy, expats hail ‘crucial’ Saudi aid in virus battle
  • “Saudi Arabia has been one of the first countries to act on this and help India, supplying it earlier with oxygen, and now once more in its time of dire need”

RIYADH: India’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia and expats living in the Kingdom have praised Saudi aid efforts to help their country in the fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
“As strategic partners, India and Saudi Arabia have always stood by each other. During the COVID-19 crisis in India, there has been tremendous support from the Kingdom, both from the government and various businesses,” Ausaf Sayeed told Arab News.
Saudi Arabia on Sunday shipped another consignment of liquid medical oxygen to India to help the country deal with a shortage amid a deadly second wave of the pandemic.
“At the government-to-government level, (Saudi) Aramco recently announced a shipment of three containers with 60 metric tons of oxygen, with more likely in the coming months,” he added.
“Before this, several companies and community organizations sent shipments through B2B efforts, taking the total oxygen sent from the Kingdom to 300 metric tons, besides more than 6,000 oxygen cylinders and several oxygen concentrators.”
Sayeed expressed his gratitude to the Saudi leadership, King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and the authorities and “all others who have been helpful in facilitating all approvals and support for quick shipment of the relief materials.”
This expression of solidarity is “extremely important,” he added, highlighting the growing ties between the two countries, especially since the elevation of the relationship to a strategic partnership, which covers all dimensions including political, economic, defense, security and culture.
Cooperation in the health sector has also been an important aspect of this partnership, which was also reflected in India exporting various pharmaceutical products last year, and COVID-19 vaccines earlier this year, said the ambassador.

HIGHLIGHTS

• Saudi Arabia on Sunday shipped another consignment of liquid medical oxygen to India.

• India has struggled with a major outbreak of COVID-19, which is now starting to ease.

India has struggled with a major outbreak of COVID-19, which is now starting to ease.
Praising the Saudi help, Gayas Ahmed Sattar, an Indian doctor who has lived in the Kingdom for over two decades and is currently medical director at Abad specialized clinics in Riyadh, told Arab News: “Timely help is God’s help. In this time of crisis, it’s a story of inspiration and hope where two nations help each other.”
He said that the Kingdom has always been a leading participant in humanitarian causes all over the world.
Sattar added that COVID-19 management inside the Kingdom has been “excellent,” both for citizens and expatriates, and thanked the authorities for their support and management of the crisis.
“From my personal point of view, some of my close friends and relatives have immensely benefited by the timely help from the Kingdom. It helped them get the right treatment at the right time, which surely helped save many lives,” he said.
Dr. Shaikh Abdullah, an Indian doctor working in Riyadh with King Abdullah Specialized Children’s Hospital, National Guard, praised the  “good gesture” on the Kingdom’s part, which has shown generosity and solidarity with India in a time of crisis.
“As the second wave hits India hard, the country has faced a shortage of many essential medical supplies to battle the deadly virus, including oxygen, which is a very important tool in curing COVID-19 patients,” he told Arab News.
“Saudi Arabia has been one of the first countries to act on this and help India, supplying it earlier with oxygen, and now once more in its time of dire need.”
Abdullah, who has been involved in the treatment of patients battling the virus for around a year, said that once the disease progresses and a patient’s condition worsens, one of the most important components of treatment is oxygen, hence a shortage of oxygen spells disaster for the patients.
He added that many of his relatives who had no access to oxygen early in the second wave in India now able to get help — “all thanks to the kind gestures of the Kingdom and other countries.”


Biden's national security adviser Sullivan to meet Saudi crown prince

Biden's national security adviser Sullivan to meet Saudi crown prince
Updated 7 sec ago

Biden's national security adviser Sullivan to meet Saudi crown prince

Biden's national security adviser Sullivan to meet Saudi crown prince

RIYADH: US President Biden’s National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan is traveling to Saudi Arabia on Monday to meet with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, according to the Associated Press. 

 

 


Riyadh Season 2021 coming to a desert near you

Riyadh Season 2021 coming to a desert near you
Updated 27 September 2021

Riyadh Season 2021 coming to a desert near you

Riyadh Season 2021 coming to a desert near you
  • The Riyadh Season is expected to provide a mixture of exclusivity and modernity, turning the Saudi capital into a preferred destination for visitors

JEDDAH: Under the slogan #Imagine_more, Riyadh Season 2021 begins in less than a month and offers events and activities for all.

Turki Al-Sheikh, chairman of the board of directors of the General Entertainment Authority, on Saturday announced the launch of the 2021 Riyadh Season on Oct. 20. It will cover an area of 5.4 million square meters across 14 districts in the capital city.

Al-Sheikh said that after the success of Riyadh Season 2019, this year’s events would be organized by Saudi teams.

The season will host 7,500 events, including 70 Arab concerts, six international concerts, 10 international exhibitions, 350 theater performances, 18 Arab plays and six international plays, in addition to one free-wrestling championship, two international matches, 100 interactive experiences, 200 restaurants and 70 cafes, all catering to a range of tastes and age groups.

Nour Fahed, who visited Riyadh’s last season in 2019, told Arab News how excited she was to be attending this year’s events. “I went to the Riyadh Season twice and I was overwhelmed with the things that I saw,” she said. “I could not believe my eyes and I was proud that my country is making international events like this.” 

Hams Nabeel, who went to Riyadh for a business trip during the season, said: “I tried some of the exotic pop-up restaurants in the season, but my favorite activity was going to the Winter Wonderland theme park. I liked how I saw and met so many foreigners and I am aiming for another adventure this year.”

Another guest, Majid Al Assiri, said that he made the most of the activities on offer during the last Riyadh Season, visiting Winter Wonderland, the boulevard, Diriyah festivals, MDLBEAST. “It will be a fantastic season, especially now that people already have an idea of what to expect from last season,” he said.

“Not to mention the second season of MDLBEAST: 2019 was a blast, it was cold because but the experience itself is unique and the first of its kind,” Assiri said. 

The Riyadh Season is expected to provide a mixture of exclusivity and modernity, turning the Saudi capital into a preferred destination for visitors. It will also contribute to achieving national goals such as raising the level of the entertainment-sector industry, creating job opportunities, growing economic returns and attracting foreign investment.

More details will be announced at a press conference on Oct. 4.

Decoder

RIYADH SEASON

Riyadh Season is the biggest part of Saudi Seasons, a series of themed entertainment, artistic, sporting and cultural events held throughout the Kingdom to boost tourism and business opportunities, and providing jobs for Saudi nationals. Riyadh Season 2021 alone will host 7,500 events, according to the Saudi General Entertainment Authority (GEA).


Who’s Who: Loay Mashabi, deputy minister at Saudi Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services

Who’s Who: Loay Mashabi, deputy minister at Saudi Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services
Updated 27 September 2021

Who’s Who: Loay Mashabi, deputy minister at Saudi Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services

Who’s Who: Loay Mashabi, deputy minister at Saudi Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services

Loay Mashabi has been the deputy minister for logistic services at the Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services since April 2021.

He has also been a board member of Saudia Cargo from August 2021 and a board member of Saudi Exports from June 2021.

Prior to his current position, Mashabi was the deputy governor for planning and development at Saudi Customs from September 2019 to March 2021.

He served as the chief operating officer of the Al-Soudah Development project, later known as Al-Soudah Development Co., at the Public Investment Fund, the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia, from February 2019 to August 2019.

From January 2017 to December 2018 Mashabi was general manager at LogiPoint Services, previously known as Isnad, the operator of the largest bonded and re-export zone in Saudi Arabia located at Jeddah Islamic Port.

From September of 2013 to December 2016, he worked as general manager at Petroleum and Energy Logistics and Services Co.

His professional career began in September 2006 at Saudi Aramco as a petroleum production engineer, and he continued to work as a senior production engineer at the oil giant until April 2013. This strong foundation in a well-governed giga-company helped to shape his career and he later moved to PETROGISTIX.

Mashabi received his master’s degree in business administration from the London Business School, a constituent college of the University of London, UK (2016-17).

He has a bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering from King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Saudi Arabia (2002-2006).

Mashabi was issued a petroleum engineering certification from the Society of Petroleum Engineers in December 2012.


Diriyah Gate signs deal with Saudi Human Resources Development Fund to train cadres

Diriyah Gate signs deal with Saudi Human Resources Development Fund to train cadres
Updated 27 September 2021

Diriyah Gate signs deal with Saudi Human Resources Development Fund to train cadres

Diriyah Gate signs deal with Saudi Human Resources Development Fund to train cadres

RIYADH: The Diriyah Gate Development Authority signed a memorandum of understanding with the Saudi Human Resources Development Fund within the framework of enhancing cooperation in the area of human resource development, supporting, training and recruiting Saudi women and men.

It aims to provide them with the necessary knowledge and skills to meet the demands of the job market – as part of DGDA’s plans to nationalize jobs and develop national cadres and competencies.

The MoU includes raising the awareness of Diriyah’s community of skills required for jobs, through organizing workshops and training programs, as well as honing skills and readiness for the job market.

It also includes exchanging data, statistics and studies between both parties and working on enhancing on-the-job training through the Tamheer program.

Hadaf commended DGDA’s plans and strategy in training and developing the national cadres and nationalizing jobs. It noted that one of its main goals is the increasing the roles of Saudis in economic growth, preparing young people to participate in the Kingdom’s development, and promoting and assisting all sectors to implement the ambitious nationalization programs.


Saudi Arabia to give COVID-19 booster shots to people aged 60 and over

Saudi Arabia to give COVID-19 booster shots to people aged 60 and over
Updated 26 September 2021

Saudi Arabia to give COVID-19 booster shots to people aged 60 and over

Saudi Arabia to give COVID-19 booster shots to people aged 60 and over
  • The Kingdom registers 5 COVID-19 deaths, 44 new cases and 58 recoveries in past 24 hours
  • Ministry of Interior records 19,870 violations against precautionary measures in past week

JEDDAH: People aged 60 and over will get a third COVID-19 vaccine dose to boost their immunity against the virus, Saudi Arabia’s Health Ministry announced Sunday.
“We are currently preparing to include older adults in the booster dose plan, which will be provided after they complete eight months since they received their second dose of the vaccine,” ministry spokesman Dr. Mohammed Al-Abd Al-Aly told a press briefing.
The ministry previously said it had started giving booster shots to high-risk individuals, including those with chronic kidney failure and people with organ transplants.
Over 41 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered since the Kingdom’s immunization campaign started. Nearly 18.3 million people have been fully vaccinated.
People aged 60 and over will get a third COVID-19 vaccine dose to boost their immunity against the virus, Saudi Arabia’s Health Ministry announced Sunday.
“We are currently preparing to include older adults in the booster dose plan, which will be provided after they complete eight months since they received their second dose of the vaccine,” ministry spokesman Dr. Mohammed Al-Abd Al-Aly told a press briefing.
The ministry previously said it had started giving booster shots to high-risk individuals, including those with chronic kidney failure and people with organ transplants.
Over 41 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered since the Kingdom’s immunization campaign started. Nearly 18.3 million people have been fully vaccinated.
“We urge everyone to complete both doses at the earliest,” said the spokesman. “Vaccination is the most important factor that will help us through the coming phase in confronting the pandemic which is, hopefully, the final stage with the virus.”
Saudi Arabia confirmed five new COVID-19 related deaths on Sunday, raising the total number of fatalities to 8,699.


The Ministry of Health confirmed 44 new cases reported in the Kingdom in the previous 24 hours, meaning 546,926 people have now contracted the disease. Of the total number of cases, 244 remain in critical condition.
According to the ministry, the highest number of cases were recorded in the capital Riyadh with 11, followed by Jeddah with seven, Madinah recorded three, and Makkah and Najran confirmed two cases each.
The health ministry also announced that 58 patients had recovered from COVID-19, bringing the total number of recoveries in the Kingdom to 535,950.
Saudi authorities continued their monitoring campaigns to ensure compliance with the precautionary measures imposed to stem the spread of the disease.
They recorded 19,870 violations of the regulations in one week, according to recent statistics from the Ministry of Interior.
The statistics indicated that the region of Riyadh recorded the highest number with 8,682 violations, followed by the Eastern Province (2,007), Makkah (1,931), Madinah (1,852), Qassim (1,540), Jouf (1,130), Hail (1,021), Jazan (391), the Northern Borders (361), Baha (355), Tabuk (292), Asir (224), and Najran (84).
The ministry called on citizens and residents to abide by the preventive protocols and the instructions issued by authorities in this regard.
Saudi municipalities have also ramped up efforts to monitor compliance with health and safety measures.
The municipality of the Eastern Province carried out 9,253 inspection tours of commercial centers and facilities in one week, identifying 493 violations. 
Field teams closed 14 commercial outlets for breaching protocols.
The municipality of Hail also carried out 1,191 inspection tours of commercial centers and facilities in one day. The authorities closed 56 commercial outlets for breaching protocols.
Municipalities urged all commercial facilities to abide by regulations to ensure public safety and prevent the spread of the disease.
Officials have also called on the public to report any suspected health breaches by phoning the 940 call center number or contacting authorities through the Balady app.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the Human Resources and Social Development Ministry said that 87,500 monitoring tours had been carried out across the public and private sectors during the past month to ensure compliance with COVID-19 measures.
There were 3,509 violations recorded, 1,948 against private sector institutions and 1,561 against people working in the private sector.
Ministry spokesperson Saad Al-Hammad said 3,784 reports of potential violations were received during the past month, adding that the ministry accepted reports through its app, hotline number 19911, and social media accounts.
Currently, 88 percent of public sector and 85 percent of private sector employees have received both vaccine doses.
“These numbers indicate an increased awareness among the public of the need for health safety in the community to confront the pandemic,” Al-Hammad said.