Saudi Cabinet briefed by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques on his regional, international consultations regarding developments in the area, kingdom’s position

Cabinet hails Jordan’s sponsoring of efforts to remove obstacles impeding solution to Palestinian issue

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia takes up Yemen developments with PM

King Abdullah of Jordan praises fraternal ties with Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, Saudi people

Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired the Cabinet session which was held at Al-Yamamah palace in Riyadh.

At the outset of the session, the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques briefed the Cabinet on discussions and consultations with a number of State leaders or their envoys on the latest regional and international developments as well as the Kingdom's stances, including the messages he sent to Leaders of Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Member States on the bilateral relations and issues concerning GCC march. The King briefed the Cabinet on the telephone call he received from Greek Prime Minister Loukas Dimitrios Papadimos.

In a statement to Saudi Press Agency (SPA) following the session, Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen, Minister of Social Affairs and Acting Minister of Culture and Information, said the Cabinet reviewed the Arab latest developments, hailing the efforts of the Arab Ministerial Committee on Syria which after its meeting in Cairo on Sunday called upon the Syrian government for s quick and full implementation of all commitments to enforcing the protocol signed between Arab League (AL) and Syria and ensuring protection of Syrian civilians and not confronting peaceful demonstrations for the success of the mission of AL observers to Syria.

The Arab Ministerial Committee called upon the Syrian government to take into consideration the partial progress in the implementation of some of the commitments undertaken by the Syrian government due to Arab Work Plan.

The Cabinet condemned the terrorist act that took place in Damascus on Friday and resulted in deaths and injuries.

The Cabinet welcomed the bilateral talks between the Palestinian and Israeli sides which took place in Jordan in the presence of envoys of the Quartet in the framework of efforts to reach common ground for resuming the stalled negotiations, considering it as a positive development and expressing appreciation of Jordanian government for hosting this meeting.

The Cabinet condemned the series of terrorist bombings that took place in Iraq and killed many innocent people.

Acting Minister of Culture and Information told SPA that the Cabinet then discussed issues relating to domestic affairs and reviewed the developments of the national economy in the aftermath of the issuance of the State budget for the fiscal year 1433/1434 H., lauding the keenness of the budget planners to continue enhancing the sustainable development march, including its balanced orientation among the economic sectors and the country's administrative regions, and creation of more jobs for Saudi citizens.

In this regard, he noted that the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques underscored the importance of maintaining a strict and sincere implementation of this budget to achieve more prosperity for the nation.

The Cabinet blessed the start of the National Program for Job-seekers Bursary as the necessary funding enough for more than half a million beneficiaries per month has been deposited in a bank account, according to a royal order to find prompt and effective solutions to assist job-seekers.

The Cabinet reviewed the international oil market developments with particular emphasis on its regional effects, stating that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is mainly interested in the stability of the international oil market in terms of the balance of demand and supply on one hand and reasonable oil prices on the other.

In this regard, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia would like to suggest that boycotting oil supplies of any source remains a domestic affair of the respective boycotting country.

Moreover, the Kingdom's oil sales is a mere commercial process that comes out as a result of deals between its oil producing companies and international oil market commercial companies who purchase the goods on normal and well-known commercial and marketing bases.

The Cabinet expressed thanks to the Indian government for its decision to abolish the dumping fees once imposed on Saudi Arabian exports of polypropylene, lauding the cooperation the Indian side has shown in a mutually-satisfying way to solve this issue.

Dr. Al-Othaimeen said the Cabinet then continued discussion of its agenda and issued the following decisions:

The Cabinet approved two cooperation agreements between the government of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the government of State of Qatar on civil defense and combating illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances and precursor chemical trafficking signed in Riyadh 1/3/2011.

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of cooperation between King Abdulaziz Foundation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Isa Cultural Center of the Kingdom of Bahrain signed in Riyadh 11/1/2011.

The Cabinet approved a framework convention on the economic, trade, investment and technical cooperation among GCC Member States and Malaysia signed in Abu Dhabi 30/1/2011.

Within the revision conducted by the Commission of Experts, an administrative affiliate of the Cabinet, to adjust the systems, orders and decisions affected by the Royal Order that has assigned the President of the Civil Aviation Authority to serve as Head of the Civil Aviation Board of Directors and that of the Saudi Arabian airlines (SAUDIA) and instructed the re-formation of their two boards accordingly, the Cabinet has decided to replace the title of 'the Minister in charge or his deputy' by the title of 'President' whenever it was mentioned in the former system of the Civil Aviation.

According to the revision, Paragraph (1) of Article (Secondly) of the Civil Aviation Authority system reads as follows: 'The General Commission for Civil Aviation enjoys a public legal personality and financial and administrative independence. It administratively reports to the Head of the Cabinet. Its headquarters will be located in Jeddah Province and the Cabinet will have the right to transfer it to anywhere inside the Kingdom while the Civil Aviation authority will have the right to open branches to perform its functions'.

The Cabinet projected the administrative hierarchy for the Civil Aviation General Commission, including a President, his deputy and members.

Whenever the titles of 'Ministry of defense, Aviation and General Inspection Authority' or the 'Minister of Defense, Aviation and Inspector General' were mentioned in the former systems, decrees, orders and decisions relating to the functions and areas of jurisdiction of the Civil Aviation authority or its President, they should be replaced by the titles of 'General Commission for Civil Aviation' and 'President of the General Commission for Civil Aviation'.

However, the members of current Board of Directors of the Civil Aviation authority will continue functioning, pending the assignment of their replacements, the Cabinet said.

Article (Firstly) of SAUDIA system will read as follows: 'SAUDIA enjoys a public legal and independent personality. It administratively reports to the Head of the Cabinet. Its headquarters will be located in Jeddah Province and the Cabinet will have the right to transfer it to anywhere inside the Kingdom'.

The Cabinet professed the hierarchy of the formation of SAUDIA, including a President, Director General and members. Article (Seventh) of SAUDIA administrative system will, instead, state that its Director General be appointed by a royal order on a recommendation of the President of the Civil Aviation authority.

The Cabinet authorized the Minister of Finance or his deputy to discuss with the countries with whom the Kingdom has signed agreements on evasion of dual taxation and prevention of tax elusion regarding taxes on income and capital the possibility of inserting an annex protocol to amend an article on information exchange.

Whenever a new amendment was reached with any country on the above-mentioned agreements, the authority concerned should sign it and forward it for higher authentication and finalization.

The Cabinet approved a number of transferences and appointments as follows:

1. Abdulrahman bin Abdulaziz bin Abdulrahman Al-Hazaa transferred from the post of administrative advisor (rank 15) to the post of Undersecretary of International Cultural Relations (rank 15) at the Ministry of Culture and Information.

2. Eng. Saleh bin Abdulaziz Al-Mogilaith transferred from the post of Assistant Undersecretary of Television Affairs (rank 14) to the post of Assistant Undersecretary of Engineering Affairs (rank 14) at the Ministry of Culture and Information.

3. Sadoun bin Saad Al-Sadoun appointed to the post of administrative advisor (rank 15) at the Ministry of Culture and Information.

4. Dr. Saad bin Abdulrahman Al-Shuraimi appointed to the post of Director General of Head's Office (rank 14) at the General Intelligence Presidency.

5. Latifah bint Suleiman Abu Nian appointed to the post of Director General of Social Female Supervision (rank 14) at the Ministry of Social Affairs.

6. Faleh bin Abdullah Al-Harbi appointed to the post of Social Security Advisor (rank 14) at the Ministry of Social Affairs.

Meanwhile, King Abdullah received at his palace Yemeni Prime Minister Mohammed Salim Ba Sindwah. During the audience, the current situations in the Republic of Yemen and aspects of cooperation between the two countries as well as ways of enhancing them in all fields were discussed.

The audience was attended by Prince Mohammed bin Saad bin Abdulaziz, Acting Governor of Riyadh Region; Prince Muqrin bin Abdulaziz, Chief of General Intelligence; Prince Metib bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, Minister of State, Member of the Cabinet and Commander of the National Guard; Prince Abdulaziz bin Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Foreign Minister; and Saudi ambassador to Yemen Ali bin Mohammed Al-Hamdan.

On the Yemeni side, the audience was attended by Abu Bakr Abdullah Al-Qirbi, Foreign Minister; Maj. Gen. Abdulqadir Qahtan, Minister of Interior; Eng. Hisham Sharaf Abdullah, Minister of Oil and Minerals; Dr. Saleh Hassan Sumiya, Minister of Electricity; Dr. Sakhr Abbas Al-Wajih, Minister of Finance; Dr. Mohammed Saeed Al-Sadi, Minister of Planning and Cooperation; Ali Ahmad Al-Amrani, Minister of Information; Mujahid Al-Qahala, Minister of Expatriate Affairs; and Yemeni ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Mohammed Ali Al-Ahwal.

On the other hand, Jordanian King Abdullah II received in Amman this week Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Ibrahim Al Al-Sheikh, Speaker of Majlis Al-Shura of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

During the meeting, the Jordanian King lauded the brotherly relations between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Kingdom of Jordan, appreciating the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques' stance towards Jordan.

King Abdullah II expressed his keenness to promote the bilateral relations between the two countries in all fields. The two sides reviewed the latest Arab developments and discussed ways of enhancing cooperation between the two countries in parliamentary and legislative fields.

The Jordanian monarch sent his greetings to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques; the Crown Prince; and the Saudi people.

For his part, the Speaker of Majlis AL-Shura conveyed the greetings of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and the Crown Prince Naif bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior, to the Jordanian King and the people and government of Jordan.

The reception was attended by a number of officials.

Meanwhile, the Speaker of Majlis Al-Shura and his accompanying delegation held a meeting with the Speaker of the Jordanian House of Notables Taher Al-Masri.

During the meeting, a number of issues of mutual concern to the two sides were discussed in addition to the latest important developments at the regional and international arenas.

The firm bilateral relations binding the two kingdoms, including aspects of parliamentary cooperation between the two chambers, were also reviewed.

The meeting was attended by a number of officials.