His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, who chaired the weekly Cabinet Meeting at the Gudaibiya Palace on Sunday, issued directives to all ministries and government entities to push for cooperation on political and economic levels between the Kingdom of Bahrain and Japan as well as the Republic of Korea by implementing what has been agreed upon in the official discussion and memorandums of understanding that have been signed.
The Cabinet welcomed the results of the visit of Shinzo Abe Prime Minister of Japan and. Jong Hong Won Prime Minister of Republic of Korea.
After the meeting His Excellency Dr. Yaser bin Essa Al Naser, Secretary General of the Cabinet, issued the details of the Cabinet meeting.
Then HRH the Prime Minister instructed the Educational authorities to continue reviewing school curriculums and evaluating them in the context of the development plan compatible with the nature of Bahraini society, as well as keeping up with current developments. The Prime Minister ordered the relevant parties to maintain the pace of school construction in all areas — especially those with new housing projects — and finalize the schools that serve the communities of Askar, Jau and Aldor in order to preserve the quality of the school environment and the proper educational climate.
The Prime Minister also congratulated the members of all educational authorities, administrations, students and parents on the occasion of the new school year 2013-2014, and the Cabinet expressed its best wishes for the educational achievements during the upcoming academic year. The Minister of Education submitted a report on the measures taken to prepare for the new school year including new academic facilities, school maintenance, provisions for facilities and textbooks.
The Prime Minister then directed a study of including driving instructors to the beneficiaries of the financial support subsidy who are subjected to the eligibility criteria and directed the Ministry of Social Development to implement it.
As part of the government’s desire to serve the needs and requests of the citizens, HRH the Premier directed the Ministerial Committee for Services and Infrastructure to finalize the requests of residents of Hamad Town relating to educational, cultural, health and entertainment services.
The Cabinet followed up on the implementation of the Government’s work for the years 2011-2014, and approved the development of a permanent follow-up mechanism that allows the constant monitoring of government project in all stages of implementation, insuring the chances of delays in finalizing projects are decreased to a minimum in fulfillment of the recommendation submitted by the Ministerial Committee for Services and Infrastructure. The Prime Minister directed that reports be submitted as they happen during the stages of implementing the projects and penalties be assessed against the entities that cause delays in project implementation, whether they stem from the supervising or implementing party. He also instructed the concerned ministries to collaborate with each other to implement projects based on priorities and time frame in order to avoid any delays in establishing and implementing vital government projects. HRH emphasized the importance of all ministries and concerned authorities meeting all requirements before starting the implementation of any government project. In this regard, the Deputy Prime Minister, Head of the Ministerial Committee for Services and Infrastructure, presented a memorandum on the committee’s follow up on the implementation of government projects for the years 2011-2014 and its recommendations on this matter.
The Cabinet approved canceling arrears of electricity, water and municipalities fees for some deceased citizens according to specific conditions and restrictions (i.e., the maximum limit is one year starting from the date the deceased stopped making payments). Based on a memorandum submitted by the Minister of State for Electricity and Water Affairs and the recommendation of the Ministerial Committee for Legal Affairs, the Cabinet directed the specialized parties to take the necessary procedures in this regard.
The Cabinet approved a draft law bill on arbitration whereby its provisions based on UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration apply to any arbitration no matter what the legal relation of the dispute is, regardless of whether this dispute is in the Kingdom of Bahrain or offshore, and both parties agree to be subjected to this law. The draft law bill places arbitration in the specialty of the Grand Civil Court and allows non-Bahraini attorneys to represent both disputed parties if international commercial arbitration is taking place in the Kingdom of Bahrain, noting that the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration was issued in 1985 and has been adopted by the United Nation’s Committee for International Commercial Law.
The Cabinet approved the concept of a draft law to unify the activities of private companies in the expedited mail and parcel services in the GCC.
The Cabinet acknowledged the important role played by the Ministry of Interior’s Coast Guard in protecting marine safety; securing the coasts; preserving the marine environment; engaging in search and rescue activities; controlling offences related to illegal marine aids and fishing gear; and monitoring the implementation of laws and decisions related to cooperation and coordination with specialized entities.
The Cabinet insured the continuity of the Government’s plans for the development of national employment and work opportunities, with continued efforts to improve wages, taking note of the national employment growth that increased by 4.5% in the 2nd Quarter of the year 2013 compared with the 2nd Quarter of 2012, as well as an increase in Bahrainis’ wages by 2% in this quarter in comparison to the same period of last year reflecting economic stability and improvement, as reported by the Minister of Labor.
The Cabinet referred to the Legislative authority six draft law bills that have been drafted in light of suggestions submitted by the House of Representatives, including a memorandum of the government’s opinion in this regard, as follows: (1) A draft law bill (in an edited form) to amend Article 7 of Decree 1 (1996) in regards to electricity and water; (2) a draft law bill to amend some provisions of Law 19 (2006) in regards to regulating the labor market; (3) A draft law bill (in an edited form) to amend Provision A of Article 36 for Law 19 (2006) in regards to regulating the labor market; (4) A draft law bill related to employees strikes in the private sector; (5) A draft law bill to amend some provisions of Law 3 (2008) in regards to the Public Authority for Social Insurance; and (6) a draft law bill to amend some provisions of Law 18 (2006) in regards to Social Security.