KSA insulated from oil price fluctuation

Crown Prince Salman chairs the Cabinet meeting.

Crown Prince Salman chairs the Cabinet meeting.

The Saudi economy and its industries are strong enough to withstand the impact of oil price fluctuations, the Council of Ministers said on Monday, pledging to continue its “balanced policy” commitments as contained in its budgets over the past few years.

The Cabinet, chaired by Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, made these comments in a statement issued after its weekly meeting. It said it had reviewed international oil market developments and determined that price fluctuations were quite “natural.”

“We are confident that our efforts will have the best results for the Kingdom. We’ll continue our balanced policy in a strong and firm manner relying on the Almighty and then the wise leadership, as well as the strong economy and strong global petroleum industry,” the statement said.

The Cabinet congratulated Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah on the success of his initiative to end the conflict between Egypt and Qatar, while commending his efforts to strengthen Arab unity. It welcomed the response of Egypt and Qatar toward the king’s initiative.

Culture and Information Minister Abdul Aziz Al-Khodairy said the Cabinet condemned the terrorist attack on a school in northwest Pakistan, which killed 148 people, mostly children. It expressed heartfelt condolences to the government and people of Pakistan and the families of the victims, and wished the injured a speedy recovery.

Earlier, the crown prince briefed the Cabinet on his talks with Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski, while Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Naif spoke about the ongoing efforts to defeat terrorists.

The Cabinet commended in this regard the great achievements of the security forces. It also praised citizens for their cooperation, which contributed to the speedy detection and arrests of terrorists in Awamiya. The Cabinet reiterated that those who tamper with the Kingdom’s security would be brought to justice.

Al-Khodairy said the Cabinet approved the establishment of private consumer protection bodies. However, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry should provide licenses for these organizations, he said.

The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding between King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology and China’s National Space Administration on cooperation in space sciences and technologies, which was signed in Beijing on March 14, 2014.

The agreement ensures cooperation in various fields, including designing, developing and manufacturing satellites for scientific experiments, earth and remote communications monitoring, satellite launching services and space sciences and exploration.

The Cabinet backed the statement issued by the Conference of the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to protect civilians, and its emphasis on implementing international law in the occupied Palestinian territories for a just and lasting peace.

Al-Khodairy said the Cabinet authorized the minister of foreign affairs to discuss with the Djiboutian side a draft agreement on political bilateral consultations between the two foreign ministries. It endorsed a similar agreement signed with Belgium.

The Cabinet approved the appointment of the following as members of the board of directors of the Electricity and Cogeneration Regulatory Authority for a period of three years: Yusuf bin Abdul Sattar Maimani, Abdullah bin Saeed Al-Mubti, Ihsan Buhulaiga and Othman Al-Khuwaiter. It also renewed the board membership of Ibrahim bin Saleh Almuetaz.

Regarding the collection of Zakat, the Cabinet authorized the finance minister to implement the royal decree to make these collections from companies, institutions and individuals required to pay this tax.


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