A view of the finished Saudi-Oman highway that cuts across the Rub' al-Khali desert is shown in this still image taken from a video posted on YouTube by Famco Saudi Arabia.

A view of the finished Saudi-Oman highway that cuts across the Rub’ al-Khali desert is shown in this still image taken from a video posted on YouTube by Famco Saudi Arabia.

70 Saudi women employed in production line

QURAYYAT — An agricultural company has employed 70 Saudi women in its production and packaging department in Qurayyat. The company’s CEO, Ibrahim Abu Abah, said they have provided the women with a suitable working environment, which is completely separate from male workers, in addition to securing them transportation facilities. He pointed out that the company pays a monthly allowance for female workers who do not wish to utilize company-provided transportation.



Al-Bilad Bank opens branch for disabled

RIYADH — Al-Bilad Bank opened a new branch in Riyadh to provide banking services to people with sight, hearing and other physical disabilities. The branch is located on Al-Takhassusi Street. During the opening of the branch, CEO of Al-Bilad Bank Khaled Bin Sulaiman Al-Jaser said there is a great need to provide banking services to people with disabilities. He said Al-Takhassusi branch has been prepared to provide services to people with all types of disabilities, including those with hearing and vision problems.



ECRA to set up spot market for power

JEDDAH — The Electricity and Co-generation Regulatory Authority (ECRA) is planning to set up a spot market for trading in electric power, Al-Hayat daily reported. The market will allow companies to compete in the lucrative power generation and distribution sector. An ECRA source said in the initial stage the trading will restricted to production and sales and, in the long run, distribution will also be included. The source said the market expects SR500 billion in local and foreign investments in 10 years.



New tunnel becomes operational

MAKKAH — In accordance with the instructions of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, a new tunnel that connects Jarwal neighborhood to the yard of the Grand Mosque’s new expansion has become operational. The head of projects at Makkah Municipality, Sultan Al-Qurashi, said the 100-meter-long tunnel is 16 meters wide, of which 9.4 meters are designated for pedestrians and 6.6 meters for vehicles. Several restrooms are also located inside the tunnel, which is equipped with ventilation and firefighting systems, all for the comfort and safety of Umrah pilgrims and visitors of the Grand Mosque.



Sculptures, decorative lights adorn streets

MAKKAH — Municipal authorities in Makkah have completed installing a number of illuminated sculptures on main streets and roundabouts in preparation for Eid Al-Fitr, in addition to a number of decorative lights of varying shapes and colors in tunnels and on suspended bridges. The head of operations and maintenance at the municipality, Bandar Noh, said more than 15,000 strings of lights have been installed in tunnels, 4,000 on trees and over 420 illuminated sculptures in streets and public parks. Meanwhile, the municipality has doubled its efforts to clean the central area of the holy city, including the yards around the Grand Mosque. Mayor Osama Al-Bar said these efforts are being executed according to a plan specially set up for the Eid Al-Fitr holidays. The deputy mayor for services, Abdulsalam Mashat, said 8,500 workers will take part in the massive cleanup operation and they will utilize over 810 different types of equipment, including 170 garbage compressors and seven mobile stations distributed in various parts of Makkah. In addition, the municipality has set up a number of field teams to monitor and inspect businesses selling products that can affect public health if certain guidelines are not followed. They include restaurants, grocery stores, shopping malls, barbers, cafeterias and vegetable and fruit stalls.



Simultaneous translation of Eid sermon

MADINAH — Arrangements have been made for broadcasting the simultaneous translation of Eid Al-Fitr sermon at the Prophet’s Mosque for the first time this year. The sermon can be heard in English, French, Urdu and Malay. Director of Translation Department at the Prophet’s Mosque Sheikh Abdullah Al-Hattab pointed out that the translation of Eid sermon comes in continuation of King Abdullah Project for Simultaneous Translation of Friday Sermons in the two holy mosques. He said visitors to the Prophet’s Mosque can listen to the sermon by radio or through their mobiles on the FM channel inside the mosque and its precincts on the following frequencies: English (105.5), Urdu (105), French (99.5) and Malay (99).



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