Saudi Arabia

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Saudi Arabia

Post  Nina on Wed Mar 25, 2009 8:20 pm

Delegation from Saudi Arabia
Represented by Ilona Ilma Ilyes

Position paper for the General Assembly of the United Nations on world economic and financial crisis and human rights education
World economic and financial crisis

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia: „I believe the world is experiencing an invisible war. A financial war. You must keep this in mind and consider the interests of religion and homeland, not the interests of individuals, because the economy is the foundation of everything.”
The world is passing through an unprecedented financial crisis. The crisis appears to have pushed much of the world into recession. No country in the world will be spared from the effects of the financial crisis and ensuing global recession.
The crisis has immediate and significant implications for Saudi Arabia. Growth will be lower, projects delayed and the budget will fall into deficit.
As many other oil states in the Gulf, due to many years of high oil prices, Saudi Arabia starts the current slowdown from a strong financial position. Dynamism within the domestic economy has been propelling the economy forward over the last few years and we think the healthy growth momentum within non-oil sector will be maintained.
The collapse in oil prices is the clearest and most immediate impact of the financial crisis on the Saudi economy. In an effort to stabilize prices OPEC members agreed cut in production. Under this new agreement Saudi Arabia’s production quota was reduced, and unless oil recovers to this level, OPEC is expected to cut production further in the next period. Lower oil revenues will mean the end of the huge budget and current account surpluses of recent years. Saudi Arabia expects oil prices to slowly rise over the subsequent few years as the global economy recovers.
Non-oil sectors have been the main driver of economic growth in recent years. The outlook has worsened most for those sectors exposed to the global economy.
We believe that the economic reforms and investment boom of the last few years means that Saudi Arabia is well positioned to weather the extreme economic and financial conditions and that the underlying economic fundamentals remain strong.
Government revenues will remain exceptionally large. With its resources the government is in the position not only to meet its own commitments but also to step in to underwrite the private sector in key strategic projects and support the private sector where necessary. This gives Saudi Arabia an advantage over most other countries in alleviating the impact of the extreme financing pressure.
Saudi Arabia recognizes the global impact of the financial crisis. Therefore the Kingdom welcomes and strongly supports actions taken on international level to face and fight the crisis. Saudi Arabia is member of the G20 and the Kingdom is represented at the international events and actions dealing with the problem of the financial crisis, like the G20 summits, the World Economic Forum in Davos, the International conference for Finance and Development in Doha, taking part in finding solutions for the crisis on international level.
Human rights education
According to the Rabat Declaration "For an Arab Strategy on Human Rights Education," human rights education is a collective responsibility of States, peoples, individuals and components of the civil society. It calls for the promotion of human rights education in the region through the "reinforcement of cooperation, the exchange of experiences and perseverance of efforts aimed at setting operational plans".
According to article 26, chapter 5, from the Basic Law in Saudi Arabia, human rights in Saudi Arabia are based on Shari’ah religious laws under rule of the Saudi royal family.
Saudi Arabia supports actions taken on international level for human rights education, especially those initiated by the UN bodies, but considers at the same time that human rights education must begin from the perspectives, preferences and desires of each society, because human rights are perceived and experienced differently in different societies. Human rights education must remain the domain of the domestic and must respect the traditions, laws, culture and religion of each country.
Saudi Arabia recognizes that general obstacles to the development of human rights education in school program are the absence of national plans in the field of human rights education, lack of proper awareness of human rights culture and human rights education in the Saudi society, weak participation of the civil society in human rights education.
Saudi Arabia recognizes that national strategies and plans in the field of human rights education must be implemented. The educational department of the state must develop a common understanding of human rights education in schools. It has to discuss strategies, based on lessons learned from other countries, towards the effective incorporation of human rights education in the school system. Key components and national priorities for human rights education programs in schools must be identified and national and regional plans for human rights education in schools must be developed. Activists and professionals must be trained, manuals and teaching aids for teachers of human rights education must be prepared.
Saudi Arabia emphasizes that in Arabic countries human rights concepts must be incorporated in the subject on religion and into Islamic principles.
Saudi Arabia initiates exchange of expertise and information between educational institutions, centers and organizations specialized in human rights education.


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