The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz chaired the weekly cabinet session held at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah today. The Cabinet began the session with a prayer for the soul of the late Crown Prince Nayef bin Abdulaziz, who died June 16. King Abdullah then expressed his appreciation to the many world leaders and officials, as well as Saudi people who have offered their condolences over the past week. King Abdullah next welcomed Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, and Prince Ahmad bin Abdulaziz, Minister of the Interior, wishing them every success.
The Cabinet offered its condolences to King Abdullah, the royal family, and family of late Crown Prince Nayef, praying to Allah Almighty to bless his soul. The cabinet then congratulated Prince Salman on the royal trust for having been chosen Crown Prince and appointed Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense. The Cabinet also congratulated Prince Ahmad on his appointment as Minister of the Interior, wishing their royal highnesses all success. The new Crown Prince thanked King Abdullah for the confidence bestowed upon him and thanked the many foreign leaders who have congratulated him on his appointments and the royals Ulema (Islamic scholars), Sheikhs and the Saudi people for congratulating him and pledging allegiance to him as the Crown Prince. Prince Ahmad also expressed thanks and appreciation to King Abdullah for the royal confidence.
King Abdullah later briefed the Cabinet on the discussions and contacts that took place last week with a number of world leaders on the latest regional and international developments. The Cabinet also congratulated Egypt’s president-elect, Dr. Mohammed Morsi, and wished Egypt peace, stability, and prosperity to continue its main role in serving Arab and Islamic issues.
The Cabinet noted that the International Monetary Fund’s ranking of Saudi Arabia’s economy 8th in terms of growth reflects the Kingdom's economic strength and stability in addition to the effectiveness of its financial and economic policies.
On domestic issues, the Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding between the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the field of political consultations which was signed in Riyadh May 11, 2011, and authorizing the Minister of Culture and Information, or his deputy, to discuss and sign a draft MoU between Saudi Press Agency (SPA) and the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP), an affiliate of the Government of the Republic of Korea. The Cabinet also approved a program pertaining to the training of Saudi specialists in France signed in Riyadh October 9, 2011 as an appendix to the cooperation agreement between Saudi Arabia and France in the field of higher education and scientific research signed on January 13, 2008.
The Cabinet approved Health Monitoring System at ports of entries in the Kingdom and amendment of Article 5 of Decision No. 217 dated 28/7/1425H. It also approved the definition of “Permanent Residence” in Article 2 of the Social Security System to mean living of the benefits of the Social Security System on continuous or intermittent pattern most days of the year, including anyone who was obliged to travel and reside outside the country for exceptional circumstances with the approval of the Minister of Social Affairs.