Some private companies are highly successful in job nationalization, training and qualification. They have outdone large regional corporations in attracting Saudi female talent and placing deserving candidates in high-ranking positions.
Large companies like Saudi Aramco and SABIC, besides other oil and petrochemical companies and banks, are the best employers for Saudis. Therefore, we think that it is unjust to speak about any failure of these companies in undertaking their corporate social responsibility. Their social roles vary from sponsoring the significant national events to the effective support of charities and social organizations.
Saudi Vision 2030 envisages the private sector as the prime mover of the developmental process, particularly after 2020. The development thereafter will be reliant on non-oil revenues, including restructuring the Zakat and tax sectors. This includes levying taxes and VAT on products that are harmful to health.
As regards Zakat, there is the so-called “Zakat base calculation differences” in many private sector investment and real estate enterprises and banks. This enhances the government’s intention to inject more confidence, transparency and governance in the private sector so that all parties may be aware of their respective rights and duties. The statements on the Zakat base differences announced by some banks are part of such transparency.
The clarifications made by the Media and Banking Awareness Committee of Saudi Banks, via its spokesman, Talat Zaki Hafiz, may be understood within this context. The Committee plays a major role in protecting the banking sector and supporting its clientele and consumers.
Hafiz said that the demands made by bank auditors during the past years are not new in any way. He added that the procedures regarding these demands are taken according to predetermined laws and legal regulations already in effect. He affirmed the strength of Saudi banks’ financial position including profit rates, liquidity volumes, and capabilities.
Banks and real estate financers assume responsibility for supporting the government’s efforts aimed at enabling Saudi families to attain housing via subsided loans. This phase requires the banking sector to respond to the demand of more than 5,500,000 families eligible for housing.