10th March 2005 - New HRDF Program to Help Saudis

The Human Resource Development Fund (HRDF) has embarked on a new program to help young Saudi men and women to identify business opportunities, develop business plans, and launch their own small enterprises.

The first such program is to be held in the Eastern Province beginning Saturday. Dubbed "Entrepreneurship Development Training Program for new venture creation", it will focus on business start-up strategies for young Saudi entrepreneurs.

The plan comes within the framework of a trilateral agreement among HRDF, Saudi Entrepreneurship Development Institute (SEDI) and Al Falak, the leading IT and communications solutions provider in the GCC region. It is designed to encourage young nationals to start new businesses in the Eastern Province.

"The active participation of a country's youth in the development of its economy is crucial to national prosperity. Saudi Arabia has a very rich talent pool of highly educated and skilled graduates, who can bring fresh ideas and enthusiasm to start-up businesses. All that is required is a focused training on dealing with the operational, financial and market realities of such a venture," explained Ahmed Ali Ashadawi, president and CEO, Al-Falak. "Along with its partners, Al-Falak aims to provide this training, as well as post start-up support, to ensure the growth of [this] important market segment," Ashadawi told Arab News.

The Kingdom allocates a major chunk of its national budget to education and vocational training. The HRDF program runs parallel to that of the General Organization for Technical Education and Vocational Training (GOTEVOT). Under it, all unemployed Saudis will be first classified into two categories: qualified and unqualified candidates.


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