Saudi Arabia Issues Guide for Licensing 274 Commercial Activities

Saudi Arabia Issues Guide for Licensing 274 Commercial Activities

The Saudi Ministry of Commerce and Investment (MCI) on Tuesday issued new guidelines for licensing businesses, including procedures required for licensing 274 commercial activities under the supervision of 26 government authorities, in a step that would develop the business environment in the kingdom.

There are confirmations that this guide will be regularly updated for the purpose of assimilating all activities in addition to engineering and developing a number of governmental procedures.

According to the ministry’s statement on Tuesday, the upcoming phase will witness launching an edition of the guide in a smart electronic interactive method under the framework of Meras initiative.

Minister of Trade and Investment D. Majid bin Abdullah al-Qasabi stated that the guide is based on Saudi Vision 2030 and the continuous efforts of government bodies to achieve this vision. He added that the positive transformation will be visible at the level if these government bodies and the Saudi economy and community within a short period.

“In order to establish a competitive economy in the 21st century, we need to change the way we perform our affairs. Commerce needs to become easier, quicker and more efficient to support the economic regime,” Qasabi declared.

Further, the ministry clarified that the guide sheds light on the licensing mechanism to get the services provided by various government authorities and institutions.

These developments coincide with MCI’s latest announcement of launching Meras initiative that aims at facilitating the practice of commercial and investment activities in the kingdom, as well as enhancing the business environment and creating a competitive one that attracts domestic and foreign capitals.

Saudi Labor and Commerce Ministries Agree to Support SMEs

Riyadh – Saudi Ministries of Labor and Social Development and Commerce and Investment have agreed on a number of mechanisms aimed at supporting small and medium enterprises, within the framework of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program.

A joint statement issued following a meeting on Thursday said the two ministries have agreed to support small and medium enterprises by adopting special mechanisms, in line with the goals of the National Transformation Program 2020.

Minister of Labor and Social Development Dr. Mufrej Al-Haqbani stressed the importance to strengthen SMEs to revive the country’s economy and create more job opportunities in the Kingdom.

For his part, Minister of Commerce and Investment Majed Al-Qasabi said Saudi Arabia’s economy was looking towards the development and promotion of small and medium enterprises, which would support national economic reforms, in line with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Program.

The meeting also discussed the establishment of a permanent committee that would include the ministries of labor and social development and commerce and investment, as well as the committee for medium and small enterprises to promote the capacities of SMEs sector and facilitate visa procedures and other administrative and government measures in this regard.

Saudi Chambers of Commerce to Boost Private Sector Role in Privatization Program

Construction cranes are seen outside the Grand Mosque in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia . Picture taken January 17, 2016. REUTERS/Amr Abdallah Dalsh

Riyadh – Saudi Chambers of Commerce and Industry are working towards the establishment of a proper mechanism to integrate private sector companies into privatization programs launched by the Kingdom within the framework of Saudi Vision 2030.

A series of workshops and studies were recently launched by the chambers of commerce and industry to discuss the means to promote the role of the private sector in upcoming privatization programs, which would start with the country’s major infrastructures, including airports.

Well-informed sources told Asharq al-Awsat newspaper on Monday that the Saudi ministry of commerce and investment has expressed its readiness to provide the chambers of commerce with the required skills and information to boost up the implementation of programs within Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030.

The sources added that the chambers of commerce would ask the government for more flexibility on the country’s legislations in order to overcome challenges facing the private sector.

Shura Council Member Dr. Hatem Al-Marzouki said that a new study was launched to identify and resolve current challenges facing the involvement of the private sector in national investments and infrastructure projects.

He added that efforts were underway to promote the role of the private sector in line with the National Transformation Program within Saudi Vision 2030.

Al-Marzouki noted that the study aims at alleviating the burdens sustained by the Saudi government and creating new income sources away from the oil-based industry.

Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Commerce Enforces E-Billing on Private Sector

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Jeddah- Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Commerce and Investment urged all companies and institutions to install electronic systems to run financial transactions and billings as an alternative to the traditional ways of settling and arranging bills.

The e-system would speed up processing bills and reduce costs, saving both time and effort.

The ministry, in a statement which Asharq Al-Awsat received a copy of, demanded that working sectors prepare their accounting departments for the installation of electronic billing.

The ministry pointed out that the measure awaiting implementation is a step towards a package of regulatory procedures which are part of a strategy adopted by the ministry.

Jeddah Chambers of Commerce’s Dr. Mohammed Dardir told Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper that electronic billing will also aid in monitoring financial activity of the private sector. The measure would help in calculating taxes on corporate income, for those considered liable for Zakat, an Islamic assessment.

Trade activity and financial statements will also be under enhanced supervision via e-billing.

Dr. Dardir said that the upgrade comes in light of the Kingdom’s vision for transformation “2030”.

Economic analysts explain that future e-billing will reduce both direct and indirect costs for institutions. The modernization of billing will also enhance accounting quality and precision, in addition to saving human resources which will then be tasked differently.

Billing is considered a crucial step in trade, marking the payments due between business partners. E-billing will further facilitate the process.

The ministry confirmed that all institutions, markets and retails in the Kingdom will use the Arabic language in printing all bills, price tags, advertisement, contracts and quotations—English will be used as an additional language.

The measure will serve the customer in receiving full knowledge on the product, service and purchase through two principal languages.