JEDDAH — The Council of Ministers on Tuesday approved the blueprint for privatization of Saline Water Conversion Corporation (SWCC). Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman chaired the weekly session of the Cabinet at Al-Salam Palace in Jeddah.

In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency following the session, Minister of Media Turki Al-Shabanah said that the Cabinet took the key decision after examining a report presented by Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture, who is also chairman of the supervisory committee for the privatization of environment, water and agriculture sector, and recommendation of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs (CEDA) in this regard.

It is noteworthy that SWCC is the largest water desalination company in the world and also the second largest electricity power producer in the Kingdom. The state-owned company is responsible for almost 60 percent of desalination in the Kingdom, which is the largest producer of desalinated water in the world.

Al-Shabanah said the Cabinet approved establishment of a water technology and transportation company to provide water transportation and technology services. The new state-owned company will be operating on a commercial basis.

The Council also approved that in the event of the injury or death of any member of the military personnel who is on the payroll of the military health staff, he will be promoted to the next rank and his pension will be calculated on the basis of the highest grade in the level above the level of his salary scale.

Al-Shabanah said the Cabinet commended the joint statement issued by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates on Yemen, welcoming the response of the legitimate government and the Southern Transitional Council to the Kingdom’s call for dialogue, stressing the need to continue this positive atmosphere, show the spirit of fraternity and renounce division.

The Cabinet also emphasized the two countries’ continuing support for the legitimate government in its efforts to preserve the components of the Yemeni state and defeat the Iranian plot, as well as that of the Houthi militia and terrorist organizations in Yemen.

The Cabinet welcomed the formation of the transitional government in Sudan, considering it as a step affirming the will of Sudanese people and their keenness on the interest of Sudan, as well as on maintaining its security, safety and stability, in addition to achieving the aspirations of its people.

Al-Shabanah said the Cabinet hailed the economic indicators contained in the 55th annual report of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority, which reviewed economic and financial developments in the Kingdom during 2018, stressing that the positive developments in the Kingdom’s economy in 2018 were the outcome of the Kingdom’s balanced economic policies.

The Cabinet welcomed the report of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that lauded the tangible progress being made by the Kingdom in terms of economic diversification, inclusive growth, job creation and continued implementation of reforms aimed at strengthening the legal framework and improving the business climate, through implementation of many planned structural reforms in accordance with the programs to achieve the Kingdom's Vision 2030.

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