1997 News Story

Council of Ministers meeting

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd Bin Abdul Aziz, presiding over the regular weekly meeting of the Council of Ministers today, underlined the importance of specific priorities of the current Sixth Five-year Development Plan, especially its focus on encouraging the private sector to generate more job opportunities for citizens and to appoint Saudis in place of expatriates.

After the cabinet meeting, Information Minister Dr. Fouad Al-Farsi said that King Fahd focused on the Sixth Plan's main objectives, in particular, the issues concerning national manpower. The objectives cited by the King include the following:

A - appointment of Saudi job-seekers and qualified manpower, in a gradual manner with increasing ratios in various economic sectors and professions;
B - rationalization of growth of non-Saudi manpower in all sectors and professions;
C - provision of more work opportunities for Saudis newly entering the labor market, particularly in the private sector;
D - increase in job opportunities for females in conformity with the Islamic Sharia laws;
E - increase in the number of graduates in specializations and professions that cope with the requirements of the national economy;
F - preparation of Saudi non-skilled labor who desire to join the labor market and provision of all assistance to them to complete school and other necessary training programs;
G - promotion of labor market services including statistical data facilities.

King Fahd also highlighted the Kingdom's stance on the latest Arab, Islamic and international developments. On the Palestinian question, King Fahd emphasized the need for resumption of the Palestinian-Israeli peace talks on the basis of international resolutions, the principles of the Madrid Conference and the principle of land for peace. The Saudi monarch felt that the desired comprehensive peace and stability requires Israeli withdrawal from all Arab lands occupied in 1967.

Also, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has made the decision to recognize the government of the Taleban movement in Afghanistan. The Cabinet wished the Taleban government every success in its efforts to re-establish peace and stability in Afghanistan, and expressed the hope that the good ties between the two countries would continue.

Dr. Al-Farsi reported that the Cabinet then endorsed an agreement between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of Germany for the promotion and protection of mutual investment which was signed in Riyadh on October 29, 1996.

In line with a recommendation of the Minister of Commerce, the Cabinet approved implementation of a resolution adopted by the 15th GCC Summit meeting on unified rules for enabling citizens of member states to possess and circulate shares of joint-stock companies of member states.