"Bari'" Funds 50 Projects of Crafts and Provides 500 New Job Opportunities

Al Khamis: Allocations to Support Craftspeople Exceed 66 Million Saudi Riyals 
"Bari'" Funds 50 Projects of Crafts and Provides 500 New Job Opportunities 

Dr. Faisal Al Khamis, General Supervisor of the National Handicraft Development Program “Bari" affiliated with the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), announced supporting more than 50 projects in various handicrafts fields with a total sum that exceeds 66 million Saudi riyals.

General Supervisor of the National Program for Handcrafts and Industries (Bari') stressed that the projects that have been supported will contribute to directly providing more than 500 new job opportunities for Saudi craftspeople.

Dr. Al Khamis referred to many efforts that the program exerts to stimulate investment in the handicrafts industries field, such as the program's cooperation with partners to provide new job opportunities for craftspeople and providing hotels with handicrafts and heritage products of murals and art pieces, as part of the internal design and decoration of international hotels running in the Kingdom. 

Al Khamis added: "Several partnerships have been launched with the private sector for cooperation and coordination in handicrafts gifts and substituting imported items with genuine local products that represent the local heritage, as well as working with the private sector and public departments in incubator programs that enable craftspeople to invest independently through practicing required jobs in the international markets, especially in the fields of jewelry, fashion and hotel furniture. Also, technical, advisory and training assistance was offered through the program agreements with supporting partners, such as "Guide me" Program and "Facilities" Program, in addition to enabling distinguished craftspeople to participate in local, regional and international meetings (Okaz, Sheikh Zayed in Abu Dhabi and Artigiano In Fiera in Italy), and these efforts also include opening technical and marketing cooperation with specialized and expert institutions, such as the British Turquoise Mountain, and Frontiers Consultants."

As for enabling craftspeople to benefit from the health and retirement insurances, the General Supervisor of the National Program for Handcrafts and Industries (Bari') said: "Based on the Council of Ministers' decision five years ago, which stipulates approving the national strategy to develop handicrafts and industries, there is a project to establish cooperative associations or companies of craftspeople for production and marketing in all regions of the Kingdom, whether for the same handicraft or a group of handicrafts that are related to maintain the interests of those who have the same handicraft and the ideological, awareness and cultural affairs and to demand for the rights of craftspeople and benefiting from service presented by government departments. Such cooperatives also aim at contributing the local community through investing in the competencies and expertise of their members, as well as seeking to develop their vocational and cultural levels through merging strong craftspeople in terms of vocational, financial or cultural aspects to establish organized and equipped production units that provide all necessary factors to penetrate local and international markets."

Al Khamis stated that the general assembly has held its first preliminary meeting, where members of the board of directors have been chosen before registering the assembly data on the website of the Labor and Social Development Ministry to apply for the establishment, where the application is now under consideration, noting that the number of those who officially registered at the handicrafts record system stands at 4,600 handicraft men and women.