King­dom stresses its pur­suit to pro­mote, pro­tect women’s is­sues ac­cord­ing to Shariah


NEW YORK: In a speech de­liv­ered at a UN ses­sion on Wed­nes­day ded­i­cated to women’s role in de­vel­op­ment, a mem­ber of the Saudi per­ma­nent mis­sion to the UN, Foza Al-Muhaid, stressed that Saudi Ara­bia will con­tinue pro­mot­ing and pro­tect­ing all is­sues re­lated to women, in ac­cor­dance with Shariah, and that an equal op­por­tu­nity to ed­u­ca­tion and train­ing is a main pil­lar in em­pow­er­ing women.

Al-Muhaid in­di­cated that the royal de­cree is­su­ing driv­ing li­censes for men and women alike, not only has eco­nomic and so­cial di­men­sions, but is also an in­te­gral part of the King­dom’s eco­nomic re­form.

The King­dom gives great im­por­tance to sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment goals through Vi­sion 2030 that largely fo­cuses on em­pow­er­ing women, said Al-Muhaid, in­di­cat­ing that one of the Na­tional Trans­for­ma­tion Pro­gram’s main points is rais­ing women’s par­tic­i­pa­tion in the la­bor mar­ket from 22 up to 30 per­cent, by pro­vid­ing 1 mil­lion new jobs for women.

Em­pow­er­ing women in dif­fer­ent so­cial, eco­nomic and ed­u­ca­tional fields has now be­come a na­tional goal to make the econ­omy stronger and able to of­fer women job op­por­tu­ni­ties and in­comes, she added.

Al-Muhaid clar­i­fied that the Saudi wo­man has never filled a task with­out achiev­ing great suc­cess and a quan­ti­ta­tive and qual­i­ta­tive change, and thus it can­not be de­nied that she is an in­te­gral part of Saudi so­ci­ety.

The King­dom is wit­ness­ing a his­toric turn­ing point by pro­mot­ing the par­tic­i­pa­tion of women in the eco­nomic field, she said.

The rate of women’s par­tic­i­pa­tion has in­creased sig­nif­i­cantly in the past years and the num­bers of fe­male en­trepreneurs have sur­passed 30,000. The scale of women’s real-es­tate in­vest­ments has reached $82 bil­lion, and the num­ber of small and medium projects presided over by women has reached more than 20,000, in­di­cated Al-Muhaid.

In the field of ed­u­ca­tion, women rep­re­sent 52 per­cent of the stu­dents reg­is­tered in uni­ver­si­ties and more than 35,000 schol­ar­ships were granted to fe­male stu­dents to study abroad.

Saudi women now have the op­por­tu­nity to study ar­chi­tec­ture, en­gi­neer­ing, me­dia, law, agri­cul­ture and other ma­jors that were lim­ited to men in the past, she said.

The Saudi wo­man is an im­por­tant part­ner in build­ing and de­vel­op­ing the la­bor mar­ket, and the King­dom will con­tinue pro­tect­ing all her is­sues in ac­cor­dance with Shariah law.

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