Saudi king names new economy minister, special adviser

The king named Faisal al-Ibrahim as the minister of economy and planning, a move that promotes him from his post as deputy minister where he had served since early 2018. Iman al-Mutairi was appointed as deputy minister of trade.
Monday 03/05/2021
King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired, virtually, the Council of Ministers. (spa)
King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud chaired, virtually, the Council of Ministers. (spa)

RIYADH – Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has appointed a new economy minister and named his eldest son as a special adviser in a series of royal decrees issued early Monday.

The king named Faisal al-Ibrahim as the minister of economy and planning, a move that promotes him from his post as deputy minister where he had served since early 2018.

Ibrahim has previously held jobs with Aramco and in the country’s Council of Economic Affairs and Development, according to Saudi state media reports.

The new finance minister Mohammed al-Jadaan had been serving as the acting minister of economy since last year.

In another decree published in state media, King Salman appointed Prince Sultan bin Salman as his special adviser. The prince, who in 1985 was first Arab astronaut to go to space,  had been head of the Saudi Space Agency.

The space agency will now be chaired by Abdullah al-Swaha, who is also the minister of communications and information technology.

In a first for the kingdom, Iman al-Mutairi was appointed as deputy minister of trade, making her the first woman to hold the post in Saudi Arabia.  The kingdom named its first female minister 13 years ago when Noura al-Faiz was made deputy minister for women’s education.

Faisal al Ibrahim. (Twitter)

Mutairi has started her career as an assistant professor of Human Genetics at Harvard University.

She has also worked as a chemistry lecturer at King Faisal University’s College of Medicine and has held several leading positions in the Saudi company Aramco, in the management, medical and human resources fields.

Mutairi also has handled the partnership project between John Hopkins Hospital and Saudi Aramco. She has previously worked as a consultant to the Minister of Trade and Investment, as the General Supervisor of the Executive Committee for Improving the Performance of Private Sector Business, Taysir, and has also coordinated the trade and investment system at the World Bank.