Saudi breaks up water and electricity ministry

The water and electricity ministry has been broken up, with the water portfolio added to a new environment, water and agriculture ministry, and electricity added to the new energy ministry

King Salman of Saudi Arabia
King Salman of Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia's King Salman has replaced his veteran oil minister and the central bank governor in a major reshuffle of senior positions a week after announcing big economic reforms.

Salman also named new ministers to run the water, transport, commerce, social affairs, health and pilgrimage portfolios and restructured some ministries in a shake-up focused on areas where the government has promised change, reported Reuters.

The most eye-catching change was the creation of a new Energy, Industry and Natural Resources Ministry under Khaled al-Falih. Falih was moved from the post of health minister to replace Ali al-Naimi, who has run the energy policy of the world's biggest crude oil exporter since 1995.

The Water and Electricity Ministry was broken up, with the water portfolio added to a new Environment, Water and Agriculture Ministry, and electricity added to the new energy ministry.

Major changes were also made to the kingdom's economic leadership, with Majed al-Qasbi named head of the new Commerce and Investment Ministry, and Ahmed al-Kholifey made governor of the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA), the central bank.

Tawfiq al-Rabeeah, formerly commerce minister, was appointed health minister, Suleiman al-Hamdan was appointed transport minister, and the Pilgrimage Ministry was renamed the Haj and Umrah Ministry.

The royal decrees also merged the ministries of labour and of social affairs into a new department, and created a new Commission for Recreation and Culture.


Most Popular