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Saudi Press Agency

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Chairs Cabinet's Session

Saudi Press Agency

Tuesday 1441/4/27 - 2019/12/24

Riyadh, December 24, 2019, SPA -- The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired the Cabinet's session held at Al-Yamamah Palace here today.

At the outset of the session, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques thanked Allah Almighty for the blessings bestowed upon this country, as the state budget for the fiscal year 1441/1442 AH - 2020 showed signs of growth and prosperity, enhancement of the development process in the Kingdom and support for economic and financial growth and stability. The King stressed the determination to continue economic reforms and ensur achieving the goals of the Kingdom's Vision 2030, directing all ministers and officials to commit to implementing development and social programs and projects included in the budget.

The Cabinet commended what was confirmed by His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, after the announcement of the general budget, of the Kingdom's continuation and progress in implementing economic reforms, advancement in diversifying the productive base of the economy while maintaining financial sustainability and creating an environment that attracts investments, which provides wider opportunities for a better future for present and future generations, in addition to the progress achieved by the economic transformation according to the Kingdom's Vision, and that the budget came to reinforce the commitment to implementing reforms and plans aimed at achieving the strategy while maintaining financial and economic stability.

The Cabinet reviewed what the Supreme Council of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) for Arab States stressed in its fortieth session held in Diriyah Palace regarding the importance of the GCC states' roles in enhancing the stability and ensuring the security of the region to face current challenges in the region. The Cabinet welcomed what was stated in the final communique of the GCC summit (Riyadh Declaration), citing the GCC leaders' keenness on cohesion, interdependence and unity, preserving gains and achievements, enhancing strategic partnerships, achieving economic unity, and emphasizing the implementation of all Supreme Council decisions and agreements that have been concluded within the Council and the commitment to these decisions and agreements to increase the GCC states' strength and achieve security, stability, growth and prosperity and their citizens.

The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on the contents of telephones calls with President Donald Trump of the United States of America; King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of the Kingdom of Bahrain; Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad; and President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen. The King also briefed the Cabinet on the results of his talks with President Sooronbay Jeenbekov of the Kyrgyz Republic, and the content of the message sent to President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi of the Arab Republic of Egypt, citing reviewing bilateral relations between the Kingdom and these sisterly and friendly countries in a way that serves common interests and enhances prospects of cooperation.

The Minister of Media, Turki bin Abdullah Al-Shabanah, pointed out in a statement to the Saudi Press Agency after the session, that the Cabinet indicated that the issuance of the royal order to approve the organizational and structural arrangements related to combating financial and administrative corruption, and brought together the relevant authorities in one apparatus in the name of "Control and Anti-Corruption Authority" embodies the keenness of the wise leadership to raise the performance and efficiency of work in a manner that enhances integrity, eliminating financial and administrative corruption, and the speedy settlement of its cases, protecting public money and tracking down and holding accountable the corrupted.

The Cabinet commended directing the related authorities to extend the payment of "cost of living allowance" for an additional year until the end of 2020, stressing that this falls within the keenness of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to seek the needs of citizens and their assistance in matters of their living and purchasing requirements.

The Cabinet hailed the signing of GCC Unified Military Command Headquarters Agreement in Riyadh, in a desire to reach cooperation and coordination in the fields of security, defense and maintaining stability, stressing that this agreement expresses the Kingdom's support for Gulf action and facilitating the task of unified military leadership work that the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques was keen to complete its requirements within the framework of his vision relating to move the joint Gulf action from the stage of cooperation to integration.

The Cabinet discussed what the first activities of the G20 meetings under the presidency of the Kingdom carried out with the participation of the official representatives of G20 Member country Leaders (G20 Sherpa) in Riyadh, and the first event of the financial track, within the series of meetings to be hosted by the Kingdom before the leaders' summit in November 2020, emanating from the Kingdom's commitment to working to find collective solutions to tackle common challenges.

The Minister of Media pointed out that the Cabinet reviewed after that a number of reports on regional and international arenas, expressing congratulations to President Abdelmajid Taboun on his victory in the presidential elections in the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria, wishing Algeria more progress and prosperity.

The Cabinet stressed the roles being played by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and its relentless endeavors to strengthen the joint Islamic action, as a collective home for Islamic action since its foundation in 1969, and a unified voice for the Islamic nation, indicating in this regard that the Kingdom is honored to host the organization's headquarters and support it along with member states to fulfill the hopes and aspirations of the peoples of the Islamic nation.

The Cabinet issued the following decisions:

First:

The Cabinet authorized Minister of Foreign Affairs or his deputy to discuss with the Emirati side a draft cooperation agreement between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, in the field of diplomatic and consular cooperation, and submit the final version to complete formal procedures.

Second:

The Cabinet authorized Minister of Islamic Affairs, Call and Guidance or his deputy to discuss with the Malian side a draft memorandum of understanding between the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Call and Guidance in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Religious and Worship Affairs of the Republic of Mali, in the field of Islamic affairs, and submit the final version to complete formal procedures.

Third:

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding to form a working group between the Ministry of Commerce and Investment, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Commerce of the People's Republic of China, to promote unimpeded trade.

Forth:

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of cooperation between the National Center for Development Strategic Studies, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Korea Development Institute of the Republic of Korea.

A royal decree has been prepared, in this regard.

Fifth:

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding between the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the government of the Republic of Iraq, for cooperation in the field of maritime transport.

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding to regulate the transportation of passengers and goods on land roads between the Ministry of Transport in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Transport, in the Republic of Iraq.

A royal decree has been prepared, in this regard.

Sixth:

The Cabinet authorized the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Food and Drug Authority or his deputy to discuss and sign with New Zealand's side a draft memorandum of technical cooperation between the Saudi Food and Drug Authority of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Primary Industries of New Zealand in the field of food trade.

Seventh:

The Cabinet authorized the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the General Commission for Tourism and National Heritage or his deputy to negotiate and sign with the Moroccan side a draft memorandum of understanding for cooperation in the field of tourism between the General Commission for Tourism and National Heritage of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Tourism, Air Transport, Handicrafts and Social Economy of the Kingdom of Morocco.

Eighth:

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding for cooperation in the field of tourism between the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Tourism of the Republic of India.

Ninth:

The Cabinet approved to amend a number of statutory texts of the income tax regulation, the value added tax regulation and the selective tax regulation as follows: "Those who have been subject to a decision issued by the General Authority of Zakat and Tax (GAZT) may object to it according to the provisions of the work rules of the tax violations and disputes settlement committees."

Tenth:

The Cabinet approved the transfer of Suleiman Al-Rajhi's colleges to a private university, under the name of (Suleiman Al-Rajhi University).

Eleventh:

The Cabinet decided the following:

1- Determine the government agencies represented in the Board of Directors of the Saudi Space Commission related to its work as defined.

2- Appointing the following as members of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Space Commission, who are specialists and experienced, in fields related to the work of the commission, as follows:

1- Prince Dr. Turki bin Saud bin Mohammed Al Saud.

2- Dr. Mohammed bin Ibrahim Al-Suwaiyel.

3- Prof. Rania Mahmoud Nashar.

Twelfth:

The Cabinet decided to amend Article (4) of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, including formation of the Board of Directors of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, and to be chaired by the Deputy Prime Minister, with member as follows:

A - Seven persons shall be appointed by Royal Decree based on the proposal of the Chairman of the Board, as members.

B - The Governor of the General Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises shall be appointed as a member.

C - Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Saudi Chambers Council, shall be appointed as a member.

Thirteenth:

The Cabinet approved the organizational arrangements for the Saudi Authority for Data and Artificial Intelligence.

Fourteenth:

The Cabinet approved a number of appointments and promotions at the 15th and 14th ranks as follows:

1- Khalid bin Mohammad bin Abdulkarim Al-Ramyan is appointed to the post of Legal Adviser (15th rank) in the Secretariat General of the Cabinet.

2- Bandar bin Badr bin Muhammad bin Araiir is promoted to the post of Regulatory Expert (15th rank) at the Bureau of Experts of the Cabinet.

3- Ibrahim bin Abdullah bin Rashid Al-Nowaiser is promoted to the post of Director General of the Ministry's Branch in Riyadh (14th rank) at the Ministry of Housing.

4- Mohammad bin Abdurrahman bin Mohammad Al-Majrad is promoted to the post of Director General of the General Department for Population Studies and Monitoring (14th rank) at the Ministry of Housing.

5- Eng. Abdullah bin Safaq bin Amer Al-Enazi is promoted to the post of Director General Manager of Lands and Properties (14th rank) at the Ministry of Housing.

6- Mohammad bin Amer bin Saeed Al-Barqan is promoted to the post of Director General of Bureau's Branch in Asir Region (14th rank) at the General Auditing Bureau.

The Cabinet was briefed on a number of general issues on its agenda, including annual reports of the General Investment Authority, the Saudi Grains Organization, the Saudi Post Corporation, the General Organization for Social Insurance, the General Auditing Bureau, the General Authority for Competition, and the Electricity and Cogeneration Regulatory Authority for two previous fiscal years. The Cabinet made appropriate recommendations in their regard.

--SPA
17:21 LOCAL TIME 14:21 GMT
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