Governor of the Northern Borders Region briefed on Ma’aden achievements in Wa’ad Al Shamal in the presence of the Minister of Petroleumand Mineral Resources
HRH Prince Dr. Mishaal bin Abdullahbin Abdulaziz bin Musaed, Governor of the Northern Borders region visited Wa’ad Al Shamal City on Thursday, 31 March 2016 accompanied by HE Eng. Ali Al-Naimi, Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and Eng. Khalid Al-Mudaifer, Ma’aden President and CEO along with other senior officials and dignitaries of the region. Prince Mishaal was briefed on the on-going projects aimed at developing a fully integrated industrial mining city that will tap on the phosphate resources, lime and unconventional gas available in the region.
During his speech, Eng. Al Mudaifer presented the various phases of the project, pointing out that the land where the project stands was an empty space less than two years ago. “Today, we are witnessing the realization of the government’s vision, that is to extend development to all regions of the Kingdom and improve the well-being of its citizens,” Eng. Al Mudaifer said.
The President also noted that since Ma’aden was entrusted with the task of establishing the city of Wa’ad Al Shamal, the company has been committed to achieve the development objectives of the project that include supporting small and medium enterprises in the region, with the current spending for local procurement, suppliers and services providers reaching approximately SAR650 million.
In addition, Eng. Al Mudaifer added that Ma’aden prioritizes the employment and training of Saudis from the Northern Borders region to work in its projects directly or by requiring the project contractors to allocate at least 12% Saudization rate in their manpower. He said: “Wa’ad Al Shamal project has successfully trained and attracted nearly 3000 Saudi employees, of which 75% are from the Northern Borders Region.”
Moreover, Eng. Al Mudaifer shared that Ma’aden has implemented several key CSR initiatives that contribute to the development of local communities such as the establishment of two excellence schools in Ar’ar and Turaif, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education to develop high quality education output that meets the industrial development requirements in the region.
“We have come a long way in the implementation of the first phase of the project’s development at Wa’ad Al Shamal City. The completion rate of the industrial phosphate complex consisting of seven mega plants and its related facilities exceeded the average of 70%,” Eng. Al Mudaifer said. “I am very proud that this mega project is being implemented in the hands of qualified young Saudis who possess the knowledge and experience gained from the company's projects in Ras Al-Khair and other parts of the Kingdom where we operate. These young Saudis are working with unrivaled enthusiasm on the project and are committed to achieving its developmentobjectives. I am honored today to represent more than 7,000 of my colleagues at Ma’aden who are exerting tremendous efforts and dedication which is reflected in the smooth progress of the project, and enable us to reach our targets,” said Eng. Al Mudaifer.
A documentary film on Wa’ad Al Shamal was presented to HRH Prince Mishaal which showcases the story of the project as well as Ma’aden’s achievements in developing the city’s industrial, residential city and overall infrastructure under the umbrella of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources and the collaboration of several ministries, companies and agencies.
HRH Prince Mishaal, accompanied by the Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, visited the Investment and Local Development Center (ILDC) which was established to promote investment and provide employment opportunities to the residents in the region. The center has created a database of thousands of job seekers and provides the project contractors with their human resources requirements. The ILDC has successfully registered local companies and services providers who are interested to be a part of the Wa’ad Al Shamal project. By end of 2015, the sales from investment opportunities at Wa’ad Al Shamalproject reached approximately SAR130 million and about 100 local companies and services providers benefited from the projects’ contracts.
The visit concluded with the tour of the city where HRH Prince Mishaal and delegation visited the residential city where they were briefed about the facilities and future developments planned. They also visited the Ma’aden Phosphate Complex where Prince Mishaal met and had a group photo with the young Saudi employees who are graduates of the Northern Borders University and the Saudi Mining Polytechnic (SMP). The Prince lauded the project’s progress and emphasized the significant impact it will bring not only in the Northern Borders but also to the national economy. He said: “We are very optimistic that we will soon witness a mega economic project rising from this region which will ensure that the development in our country is inclusive, balanced and targeting all regions.”
HE Eng. Ali Al-Naimi, expressed his thanks to HRH Prince Mishaal for his interest and support in the project. He emphasized that the project supports the government’s efforts to diversify sources of national income and help achieve a balanced and sustainable development. The Minister also pointed out that Wa’ad Al Shamal project, which has an approximate investment of SAR36 billion, is one of the key initiatives that will help the Kingdom to achieve these goals. He added that the project is expected to contribute SAR15 billion to the national GDP.
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