Saudi Cabinet briefed on latest developments in the region

Cabinet hails dialogue among Yemenis, welcomes international positions supportive of Gulf dialogue initiative

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques discusses with Bahraini Prime Minister issues of mutual concern

Crown Prince Sultan receives Prince Khalifa

Bahrain’s PM: Saudi-Bahraini relations deeply rooted, growing stronger

Saudi Minister of Petroleum says kingdom capable of meting global demand

The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired the Cabinet session held at Al-Yamamah Palace.

At the outset of the session, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on the consultations, messages and contacts that took place during the past days with a number of leaders of brotherly and friendly countries and their envoys on bilateral relations and the developments in some brotherly countries.

In a statement to Saudi Press Agency (SPA) following the session, the Minister of Culture and Information Dr. Abdulaziz bin Mohieddin Khoja said the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on the meeting he held with King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain; the audience he held for Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabr Al Thani of Qatar; the message and telephone call he received from President Barack Obama of the United States of America; and the audience he held for the Deputy Foreign Minister Hisashi Tokunaga of Japan who is also the private envoy of the Japanese Prime Minister.

Dr. Khoja said the Cabinet listened to a number of reports on the overall developments at regional and international arenas.

The Cabinet followed with interest the ongoing developments in Yemen and was briefed on the outcomes of the 33rd Extraordinary Meeting of the Ministerial Council of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Member States' Foreign Ministers held in Riyadh in the presence of Yemeni opposition delegation to discuss the GCC initiative on the Yemeni crisis.

The cabinet lauded the constructive and fraternal dialogue during the meeting which reflected the desire of both sides for bridging the views, continuing work and exerting more efforts to ensure the security, stability and unity of the Republic of Yemen.

The Cabinet welcomed the international stances supporting the GCC initiative on the Yemeni crisis, particularly what was voiced in this regard by the Arab League, Council of the European Union and the governments of the U.S. and France.

The Minister of Culture and Information pointed out that the Cabinet addressed a number of cultural and economic activities which took place during the last week under the patronage of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

The Cabinet expressed appreciation for the native and foreign guests of the National Guard -scholars, writers, intellectuals and media staff- who are participating in the 26th Janadriyah National Festival for Heritage and Cultural, for their feelings towards the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in light of the position this festival achieved as a platform of international standard for dialogue, thought and culture.

The Cabinet also hailed the success achieved by the Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Contest for Memorization and Recitation of the Holy Quran in Africa, which was concluded in the Republic of Senegal under the auspices of President Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal.

The Cabinet also addressed the security operations that took place during the first quarter of this year, which resulted in arresting a group of individuals for their involvement in smuggling narcotics, in addition to foiling the group's plans which aimed at damaging the country and citizens.

The Cabinet praised the coordination between the various bodies in the field of monitoring, following-up and seizing these drugs, and commended the role the security men played in carrying out their duties to protect the citizens from the scourge of narcotics and to arrest those involved in such criminal activities.

Dr. Khoja said the Cabinet reviewed a number of issues on its agenda and issued the following decisions:

The Cabinet authorized the President of General Authority of Civil Aviation -or his deputy- to discuss and sign with the Tajik side a draft agreement in the field of air transport services between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of Tajikistan.

The Cabinet approved a number of procedures pertaining to attracting some foreign scientists and experts to benefit from and cooperate with them through research programs in scientific fields of and scientific research, including:

1- Developing a 'Scientist or Expert Visa' to be granted gratis to scientists and experts who have proven their distinction in their respective fields.

2- Forming an internal committee consisting of the Ministry of Higher Education, King Abdulaziz City for Sciences and Technology, King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy and the Health Services Council. The committee shall be specialized in fields required by each body, provided that such fields are among the fields listed in the document of the National Policy for Sciences and Technology issued by the Cabinet Decision No. 112 dated 27/04/1423 H.

3- The attraction shall not be limited to scientists and experts of a particular nationality.

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding in the fields of Islamic affairs and endowments between the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Endowments, Call and Guidance of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Religious Affairs of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, signed in Dhaka on 29/09/2010.

The Cabinet authorized the Minister of Agriculture -or his deputy- to discuss and sign with the Kazakh side a draft memorandum of understanding in the field of agriculture and livestock between the Ministry of Agriculture of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

The Cabinet approved the reactivation of the decision stated in paragraph (1) of the Cabinet decision No. 11 dated 19/01/1429 H., which provides that the State bear 50% of the port levied charges; the reactivation takes effect for another three years, starting at the date of expiration of the previous decision.

The cabinet approved a number of appointments as follows:

1- Musaed bin Saleh bin Abdullah Al-Hammad appointed to the post of Director General of Mujahedeen (Rank 15) at the Ministry of Interior.

2- Mansour bin Saleh bin Mohammed bin Shalhoub appointed to the post of Minister Plenipotentiary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

3- Misha'al bin Naif bin Thallab Al-Otaibi appointed to the post of Director General of Health Affairs in Qassim Region (Rank 14) at the Ministry of Health.

Meanwhile, King Abdullah received at his palace in Riyadh visiting Bahraini Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa.

At the outset of the meeting, Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa conveyed to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques the greetings of King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain. In turn, the monarch sent his greetings to the King of Bahrain. The Bahraini Prime Minister also offered his condolence to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques on the sad demise of Princess Sita bint Abdulaziz bin Abdulrahman Al Saud. The monarch thanked him for his noble feelings.

Then a number of issues of mutual concern to the two countries were discussed.

The audience was attended by Prince Saud Al-Faisal, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Prince Bandar bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz, Secretary General of the National Security Council; Prince Miteb bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, Minister of State, Member of the Cabinet and Commander of the National Guard; Prince Abdulaziz bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, Advisor to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques; and Dr. Abdulmohsen bin Fahd Al-Mark, the Saudi Ambassador to Bahrain.

On the Bahraini side, the meeting was attended by Shaikh Ali bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Deputy Premier; Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Advisor to the Prime Minister; Shaikh Ibrahim bin Hamad Al Khalifa; Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister; and senior protocol officials.

Prince Khalifa expressed pleasure for visiting the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia which he described as the Arab Grand Homeland, Arab Gulf strategic innermost and cradle of the Islamic civilization.

In a statement to SPA upon arriving in Riyadh, Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa said the people of Bahrain harbor every feeling of amicability and appreciation to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, wishing the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud continuous health and happiness and the Saudi sisterly people steady progress and prosperity.

Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa lauded the Bahraini-Saudi relations, describing them as deep-rooted, firm and daily flourishing, thanks to the care and interest of King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain and the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.

He said the two countries were bound with fraternal relations and common destiny, expressing his continuing appreciation of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques for the support rendered to the Kingdom of Bahrain by its sisterly country the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

He cited the continuous support extended by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the development march in Bahrain over the years and the strong support offered by the King, government and people of the Kingdom of Bahrain during the regrettable incidents witnessed in Bahrain recently.

Shaikh Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa confirmed that the deep-rooted strong ties binding the Kingdom of Bahrain and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia were and will remain an example in history referring to non-marred relations of love and joint work, thanks to the prudent leaderships of the two countries who believe in the inevitability of Saudi Arabia and Bahrain sharing the same destiny.

In conclusion, he wished the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques and the Saudi people every success and well-being.

Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Premier, Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General received at his palace in Riyadh visiting Bahraini Prime Minister Prince Khalifa.

At the outset of the meeting, Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa conveyed to the Crown Prince the greetings of King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain. In turn, Crown Prince Sultan sent his greetings to the King of Bahrain.

During the audience, they reviewed bilateral relations between the two countries and ways of enhancing them in all fields.

The meeting was attended by Prince Saud Al-Faisal, Minister of Foreign Affairs; Prince Khalid bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz, Assistant Minister of Defense and Aviation and Inspector General for Military Affairs; Prince Fahd bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz, Assistant Secretary General of the National Security Council for Intelligence and Security Affairs; Prince Naif bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz; Prince Mishaal bin Sultan bin Abdulaziz; Prince Mohammed bin Fahd bin Saud Al-Kabeer, Special Secretary at the Crown Prince's Court; Dr. Abdulmohsen bin Fahd Al-Mark, the Saudi Ambassador to Bahrain; and senior protocol officials including.

On the Bahraini side, the meeting was attended by Shaikh Ali bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Deputy Premier; Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Advisor to the Prime Minister; Sheikh Ibrahim bin Hamad Al Khalifa; Shaikh Khalid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, Deputy Prime Minister; and senior protocol officials.

On the other hand, the Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, Ali bin Ibrahim Al-Naimi has said that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's position in the global oil markets is based on its commitment to preserve spare production capacity for maintaining the stability of prices and markets alike, adding that the Kingdom has a clear and consistent policy in moderation in all its decisions concerning the global oil markets.

In his speech at the 4th Asian Ministerial Round Table Meeting currently in progress in Kuwait, Al-Naimi has said that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has the largest oil reserves of low costs in the world and it is the largest producer and exporter of liquid petroleum, noting that the state of financial and political stability has enabled the Kingdom to reach a production capacity of 12.5 million barrels of oil per day and to maintain it, which provides a spare cover up of about 3.5 million barrels per day over the current production levels, which are adjusted according to the circumstances of the global market.

The Minister said that the Asian region occupies an important position for the Kingdom in terms of relationships in the field of energy, indicating that the Asian market is currently importing two thirds of the Kingdom's exports of crude oil, adding that the Kingdom is the largest supplier of oil to key markets in the region such as China, Japan, South Korea, India, and Taiwan.

He has pointed out that the West Asia region accounts for two thirds of total global fixed reserves of conventional oil which enable it to meet the regional increase in the demand for oil.

The Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources has re-affirmed that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is capable and committed to meeting Asia's future oil needs and it will continue to build the bonds of partnership and cooperation as well as their enhancement with all countries of the continent on the basis of mutual benefits to all parties as well as mutual respect.