Saudi King orders Ramadan aid of $500 million to citizens
Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz has ordered the disbursement of 1.9 billion riyals ($500 million) as Ramadan aid for social security beneficiaries, the minister of human resources and social development said.
The King’s gesture is to extend “generous support” to Saudi citizens, the minister Ahmed bin Suleiman Al Rajhi said in a tweet late on Monday.
The decision came as the world reels under the economic repercussions of the second year in a row of the coronavirus pandemic.
Saudi Arabia announced in December that 2021 would witness the beginning of economic recovery.
The kingdom has managed to weather the impact of the pandemic and fluctuations in oil prices through several initiatives based on spending efficiency, diversification of national income, in line with its Vision 2030 plan to reshape the Arab world’s biggest economy.
Earlier this month, Saudi Arabia asked malls, supermarkets and restaurants and cafes to increase the percentage of Saudi citizens hired, as it looks reduce unemployment and create jobs.
Creating jobs is one of the central components of Vision 2030.
The kingdom aims to reduce unemployment to seven per cent and increase women’s participation in the workforce to 30 per cent by 2030.
The overall unemployment rate in the kingdom – Saudis and non-Saudis above 15 years of age – fell to 7.4 per cent during the last four months of 2020, from 8.5 per cent recorded in the third quarter of last year, according to the general authority for statistics data carried by SPA last month.
Saudi Arabia announced in 2016 the Vision 2030 reform plan, a package of economic and social policies designed to free the kingdom from dependence on oil exports.
One key aspect of the plan is about restructuring state assets and agencies, rather than reducing spending.
The deadline to achieve most of the goals is 2030.
amp-thenationalnews-com | gulfmorningnews.com