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The exemption was

decided after the Council

of Saudi Chambers

approached Crown

Prince Muhammad

Bin Salman, deputy

premier and minister of

defense and head of the

Council of Economic and

Development Affairs.

The paper containing the extensive research will

be presented in November at this year’s edition of

the ACM Conference on Computer and

Communications Security, the leading cyber

security conference in the world.

US TAKES COMMANDING LEAD

>>

P13

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LEBANON ARMY ADVANCES

WWW.

SAUDIGAZETTE

.COM.SA

Issue No: 14564 ISSN (1320-0326 )

I

Saudi Riyal 2

MONDAY 21 .8. 17 DHUL QADA 29 1438

Continued on P3

Expats occupy over 10m jobs

By Fatimah Al-Dubais

Okaz/Saudi Gazette

DAMMAM —

Foreign workers

in the Kingdom compose a large

portion of the workforce as ac-

cording to well-informed sources

Indians, Pakistanis, Egyptians,

Yemenis and Bengalis occupy

more than 10 million jobs. There

are 3 million Indians, 2.5 million

Pakistanis, 2.2 million Egyptians,

1.4 million Yemenis and 1.2 Ben-

galis in the Kingdom, i.e. 10.3 mil-

lion in total, sources said.

Labor force survey results

showed that the number of non-

Saudi employed persons for the

first quarter (Q1) of 2017 reached

10,850,192 while the total number

of employed persons reached

13,889,137.

The latest figures have led

to renewed widespread calls by

specialists to cut the number of

foreigners in Saudi Arabia by get-

ting rid of at least half of the ex-

patriates in the Kingdom.

Furthermore, they also called

for restricting recruitment of ex-

patriate workers to occupations

that Saudis do not work in as well

as those that need highly skilled

people and there are no Saudi

specialists in such fields.

Authorities have taken ump-

teen measures to reduce depen-

dence on expatriate workers in

several fields.

From time to time, they have

included new domains under the

Nitaqat nationalization scheme.

These include disability centers,

strategic partnership institutes,

health colleges, female services,

children’s hospitality centers,

female cosmetic centers, female

sewing centers, the construction

sector involved in projects at the

Two Holy Mosques, gas stations

and the pilgrims’ transportation

sector.

Several newly included cat-

egories, such as photography

shops and women’s sports cen-

ters, are highly dependent on a

female workforce.

In addition, levying of the

expat fee which became effec-

tive in July this year, has forced

many foreigners to pack up and

go back to their countries. The

government hopes that the resul-

tant vacancies in the job market

will be filled by young Saudis of

both genders.

Expatriate workers at a road construction site.

— Okaz photo

NYU Abu Dhabi researchers develop computer chip security technology

Saudi Gazette report

ABU DHABI —

Researchers at

New York University Abu Dha-

bi’s (NYUAD) Design for Excel-

lence (Dfx) lab have developed

new innovations in computer

chip technology that present

landmark achievements in IT se-

curity. Secured by a secret key so

that only authorized users may

utilize them and immune to re-

verse-engineering, ‘logic-locked’

computer chips will provide fu-

ture users with new guarantees

of security for their devices.

As IT security rises to the

forefront of public concern in

the wake of recent cyber secu-

rity attacks such as WannaCry

and Petya ransomware, academic

solutions have been investigated

in order to secure future sys-

tems from hackers. With any

electronic device claiming to be

“smart” containing a chip, from

cell phones and computers to air-

planes and medical devices, chip

security has become a subject of

priority amid the broadening de-

Public sector contractors

exempt from workers’ tax

Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH —

The Council of

Ministers has announced that

contractors working on public

sector projects before the deci-

sion to impose workers’ tax are

exempt from paying the levy.

All contractors working on

public sector projects that began

before the decision was issued in

December 2016 will be exempt

from expatriate workers’ tax. The

exempted contractors include

those who are currently work-

ing on projects scheduled to be

completed after 2018, Al-Watan

Arabic daily said.

A committee will be formed

to set procedures for compensat-

ing projects that have been hin-

dered due to the decision.

The exemption was decided

after the Council of Saudi Cham-

bers approached Crown Prince

Muhammad Bin Salman, deputy

premier and minister of defense

and head of the Council of Eco-

nomic and Development Affairs

(CEDA).

The Council of Saudi Cham-

bers requested the Crown Prince

for a review of the proposed ex-

patriate workers’ tax. It argued

that the decision could disrupt

the workflow and seriously affect

the budget of the project.

The council further argued

that because of the cash crunch,

the contractors may not be able

to pay wages to their workers

which could impede the flow of

work.

It said the same was the case

when new fees was levied on the

issuance and renewal of opera-

tion licenses.

Such inconveniences could

hinder the project from achiev-

ing the goals of Vision 2030, the

bate surrounding measures for

cyber defense. 

“Traditionally, security fea-

tures are implemented at the

software or system levels; for

the first time, we have security

implemented at the lowest pos-

sible level, the hardware level.

This is quite important because

if the hardware is compromised,

there is no software or system

security fix,” explained NYUAD

Associate Dean of Engineering

for Academic Affairs, Associate

Professor of Electrical and Com-

puter Engineering, and head of

Dfx Ozgur Sinanoglu.

“This chip can be unlocked

only by loading the secret bina-

ry key on its memory. Without

it, the chip will not work. Only

when the secret key has been

loaded will the microprocessor

unit inside execute the program

loaded on its memory, ” he added.

NYUAD’s Dfx research team

designed two different chips over

the past year, utilizing commer-

cial and in-house developed soft-

ware tools to help them build a

baseline chip as well as their log-

ic-locked chip. These are micro-

controller chips with mainly an

ARM microprocessor unit; they

allow you to load a software pro-

gram onto their memory, which

they may then execute, allowing

users to design a computational

system or computer around

them. The team at NYUAD are

now pursuing a platform that will

enable the research community

to validate the security of their

new solution through extensive

red-team blue-team testing. 

 Through their research at

NYUAD, the Dfx team have

surged ahead in the field of so-

lution development for IT secu-

rity, Sinanoglu explained: “The

industry is slowly developing

solutions, but they are early solu-

tions that are not as of yet so se-

cure. Academia is quite ahead in

the game, with various research

groups working on this area. Our

solution is the first one that is

provably secure, based on math-

ematical security definitions and

security proofs as well as imple-

mented on a real chip.”

“Our goal is to make all elec-

tronics truly trustworthy. We are

now in a position where we can

take any chip design and trans-

form it into one that is secure at

the hardware level, which means

we can work with design compa-

nies to help them produce pro-

tected computer chips,” Sinano-

glu added.

The paper containing the ex-

tensive research conducted by

NYUAD’s Dfx team into logic-

locking technology will be pre-

sented in November at this year’s

edition of the ACM Conference

on Computer and Communica-

tions Security, the leading cyber

security conference in the world.

Pilgrims cycle 3,000 km on way to Madinah

By Irfan Mohammed

Saudi Gazette

JEDDAH/MADINAH —

A

group of nine British pilgrims

cycled 3,000 km on their way to

Madinah in their six-week long

journey from London. The group

was accorded a warm welcome

by Saudi authorities and cycling

enthusiasts. Saudi Cyclist As-

sociation and Taibah Cyclist As-

sociation, under the patronage of

Saudi Sports Authority, received

the pilgrims at a traditional cer-

emony by beating drums and

showering rose petals.

“Indeed it is an inspiration

for the cyclists and a pleasant

experiment to welcome British

Haj pilgrims who arrived in the

Traditional welcome being accorded to the British bicyclists.

— Courtesy photos

The British pilgrims on their way to the Prophet’s Mosque.

Warm welcome

for 9 Britishers

H a j i n

n umb e r s

As of Sunday, a total

of

1,070,951

pilgrims have

arrived in the

Kingdom, of which

1,015,482

came by air,

50,554

by

land and

4,915

by sea.

Supreme

Court: Sight

Dhul Hijja

crescent today

Saudi Gazette report

RIYADH —

The Supreme Court

has called on all Muslims in the

Kingdom to sight the crescent of

the month of Dhul Hijja on Mon-

day (Aug. 21, 29 Dhul Qada 29

according to Umm Al-Qura cal-

endar), Saudi Press Agency said.

The Supreme Court said any

one who sees the new crescent

by naked eyes or through binocu-

lars must report to the nearest

court and register his testimony.

“Any one who sights the

moon and is unable to reach the

courts should seek the help of the

police,” it said.

The court said if the crescent

could not be sighted on Monday,

then people should continue

looking for it on Tuesday, Dhul

Qada 30.

The sighting of Dhul Hi-

jja moon will decide the day of

Standing on Arafat, the climax

of the Haj pilgrimage, and subse-

quently the Eid Al-Adha day.

council petitioned.

Public sector projects usu-

ally take 3 to 5 years to complete.

Companies plan their budget per

project and the budget is usually

meticulous and accurate from

calculating the expenses of the

materials to calculating the sala-

ries of the workers.

Any additional expenses

could be detrimental to the sus-

tainability of the project, the

council said.

The Council of Saudi Cham-

bers also requested to allow

hiring of expatriate workers in

fields where qualified Saudis are

not available. Such fields include

cleaning works, sewer work and

others.

The CEDA forwarded the

proposal to the Cabinet and

urged a reply to the proposal

within 60 days.

The Cabinet held a meeting

with its Commission of Experts

and the latter approved the pro-

posal after studying its feasibility.

Prophet’s City,” Mohammed Al-

Sarani of the Taibah association

told Saudi Gazette.

 The pilgrims were allowed

to drive directly to the Prophet’s

Mosque.

The group took off from Lon-

don on July 14 passed through

France, Switzerland, Italy, Greece

and Egypt, Saudi Press Agency

said.

The group had actually

planned to come to the King-

dom via Turkey, Syria and Jordan

but due to security reasons they

traveled by ship from Greece to

Egypt from where they traveled

by air to Jeddah.