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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