Manama, Sep.27 (BNA): His Royal Highness Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, the Crown Prince and Prime Minister, today chaired the weekly Cabinet Meeting, at Gudaibiya Palace.
The Cabinet congratulated His Royal Highness the Crown Prince and Prime Minister for being awarded the C3 Leadership Award, granted by the 2021 C3 US-Arab Healthcare & Business Summit.
The award was in recognition of HRH the Crown Prince and Prime Minister's leadership across many areas, as well as HRH's efforts in combating the COVID-19, and further strengthening Bahrain-US relations.
His Royal Highness expressed his gratitude to officials at government authorities, constitutional institutions, diplomats and members of various embassies, the members of municipal councils and officials at private companies, as well as the citizens and residents who have expressed their congratulations for the award.
His Royal Highness affirmed that the award honours all, including Team Bahrain's efforts in transforming challenges into opportunities and to further the Kingdom’s comprehensive development, led by His Majesty King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa.
The Cabinet congratulated the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on their National Day, praising their comprehensive development, prosperity and progress, led by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, and HRH Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of Saudi Arabia.
The Cabinet discussed several memorandums during the meeting with the following outcomes:
The approval of the following memorandums:
1- A memorandum by the Government Executive Committee on the progress of the programs implemented within the Government Priorities Framework up to September 2021, and the execution plans for projects within its third edition, which aim to achieve financial sustainability and secure an environment that supports development.
2- A memorandum by the Ministerial Committee for Legal and Legislative Affairs concerning four MoU’s between the Kingdom of Bahrain and the State of Israel. The MoU’s aim to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the fields of sports, innovation and development in water resources, environmental protection, nature & habitat conservation, medical services and research.
3- A memorandum by the Ministerial Committee for Legal and Legislative Affairs on granting the State of Israel sovereignty over their data stored in Bahrain on the Provision of Cloud Computing Services to Foreign Parties.
4- A memorandum by the Ministerial Committee for Financial and Economic Affairs and Fiscal Balance regarding the review of the performance of the Fiscal Balance Program since its launch in 2018, the impact of the COVID-19 global pandemic on the financial and economic situation, as well as the options studied to achieve a fiscal balance between government expenditures and revenues.
The Cabinet commended the role of the Legislative Authority in maintaining social support for eligible citizens and stressed the importance of continuing to work together to enhance financial stability.
It was also agreed to progress constitutional and legal procedures to refer a draft law amending some provisions of the VAT law to the Legislative Authority, which includes an amendment to the value-added percentage starting from 1 January 2022.
5- A memorandum by the Minister of Finance and National Economy regarding the Kingdom of Bahrain’s logistics plan, which includes the strategic objectives of the sector, and the future plan for air cargo at Bahrain International Airport, and the launch of *a global sea to air hub* in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
6- A memorandum by the Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism regarding the recognition of a number of countries as global partners for the global sea to air hub launched in the Kingdom of Bahrain, allowing companies based in these countries to apply for accreditation as an authorised operator of this service. The benefits of the service include transporting cargo between sea and air ports in a period of no more than two hours, enhancing shipping speeds and reducing competitive costs.
7- A memorandum by the Minister of Works, Municipalities Affairs and Urban Planning regarding the sea reclamation line within the Nabih Saleh Island.
The Cabinet reviewed the following topics:
1- A memorandum by the Minister of Finance and National Economy regarding the quarterly economic report for the second quarter of 2021, which outlined the Kingdom’s ability to return to pre-pandemic economic and financial progress.
The preliminary results of the report showed that nominal GDP grew by 20.7% during the second quarter of the year compared to the same quarter of 2020, supported by growth in the non-oil sectors of 12.8%. While the real GDP growth rate reached 5.7% on an annual basis, which reflects the success of national efforts mitigating the repercussions presented by the global COVID-19 challenge.
2- A memorandum by the Minister of Health regarding the achievements of the National Committee to Combat Chronic Non-Communicable Diseases for the years 2017-2021.
3- The Cabinet took note of the ministerial reports of the Ministers on the results of the participation in the seventh meeting of the Council of Ministers of Labour and Council of Ministers of Social Affairs in the GCC, as well as the signing of the agreement to organise the Bahrain International Air Show 2022-2024 and participation in the DESI exhibition in London. As well as Bahrain chairing the nineteenth meeting of the Committee of Ministers dealing with Housing Affairs, and the Kingdom’s participation in the fifth Arab Water Forum.