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RIYADH: Saudi Minister of Economy and Planning Faisal bin Fadel Al-Ibrahim discussed the importance of investing in Saudi youth in an exclusive interview with Arab News.

The minister said that young people are “the guardians of tomorrow’s economy” and the key to driving the Kingdom’s economic transformation under Vision 2030.

“We have a responsibility to ensure that young people are equipped with the tools and knowledge to generate value and impact at the decision-making tables,” Al-Ibrahim said.

With young people making up the majority of the Kingdom’s population, the minister highlighted some of the ways he believes Vision 2030 is opening up new opportunities for younger generations.

“Vision 2030 was designed to lay the groundwork for growth, uniting the Kingdom on a journey towards a common and prosperous future,” he said.

With their native digital skills, they can take our economy in new and exciting directions, as we continue to accelerate the Kingdom’s diversification, drive growth in our non-oil sector, and aspire to become one of the top 15 global economies by 2030.

Faisal bin Fadel Al-Ibrahimsaudi minister of economy and planning

“The new sectors created by Vision 2030 provide an unprecedented opportunity for Saudi youth to power the new economy. With their native digital skills, they can take our economy in exciting new directions, as we continue to accelerate the Kingdom’s diversification, drive growth in our non-oil sector and aim to become one of the top 15 global economies by 2030.” said. additional.

Al-Ibrahim said that the work currently being carried out by the Ministry of Economy and Planning contributes to the realization of Vision 2030.

He stressed that the ministry’s commitment to helping develop future economists, researchers and policy planners is ongoing and will carry this work forward in the Kingdom’s future.

“I am constantly in awe of what our young people can do when given the chance,” he said.

“Empowering young people to work and ultimately invest in themselves will only serve to strengthen our future labor market, boost productivity and improve our global economic competitiveness,” he added.

Al-Ibrahim was a speaker at the second day of the Misk Global Forum which concluded Thursday in a session titled “The Generation Remaking the World,” where he discussed ways to empower youth and future Kingdom leaders with the skills to navigate economically. transformation in an inclusive and collaborative way.

“The energy and dynamism radiating from our youth today, which was on full display at Misk Global Forum 2022, is inspiring. They are our future and the guardians of tomorrow’s economy. And we must invest in them now to unlock the potential of the demographic dividend that we have, with one of the largest populations of young people in the world,” he said.

The minister discussed the importance of holding open debates and meetings to address global issues from all perspectives, from the young to the older generations, such as the Misk Global Forum.

“There is tremendous value in opening your mind to young energy. Bringing different generational perspectives to any challenge only enhances the solutions we can design and execute,” she explained.

“As a nation, we are designing policies that work for everyone, in a forum that is open to input from people across the generational spectrum. This sends a very clear message to our youth that nothing is stopping them from contributing significantly to the economic transformation of the country,” she added.

The minister also highlighted the role of his ministry in the Kingdom’s sustainability ambitions under the UN Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework, signed in June this year and in force until 2026.

“The Ministry of Economy and Planning recently established the Sustainable Development Steering Committee to monitor performance and coordinate efforts to achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals,” he said.

“It is led by government experts from the Kingdom who are committed to ensuring the successful implementation of the national SDG agenda,” he added.

“To further enhance our momentum towards achieving the SDGs, we signed the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework in June to accelerate joint efforts to achieve progress on climate and sustainability.”

The framework is one of the main tools for mapping out cooperation between the UN and the Saudi Arabian government on sustainability. Some of the 17 goals the Kingdom is working with the UN to achieve include gender equality, education, clean and affordable energy, climate action and sustainable cities and communities.

The framework is a joint effort between the Ministry of Economy and Planning, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the UN.

The minister concluded the interview with advice to the younger generations in their roles to contribute to the Kingdom Vision 2030.

“Developing a problem-solving mindset is crucial in today’s socioeconomic climate. And we have already seen clear evidence that they have it,” he said.

“Everyone rallied behind the cause (during the COVID-19 pandemic) and responded to the moment because of this sense of ownership that came from participating in it. The young people of Saudi Arabia were up for the challenge,” he said.

“Today they face several significant challenges and they will have to develop resilience and agility to overcome them.”

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