2004 Press Release

Saudi Arabia nears completion of election plans
Washington DC

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has announced that plans and agreements for the establishment of municipal council elections are nearing completion.  The Kingdom, which first announced last fall its intention to hold local elections, has had teams and committees working in conjunction with international experts and organizations to formulate the process.

“Saudi Arabia is moving on a path of political and economic reform,” said Ambassador to the United States Prince Bandar bin Sultan. “Municipal elections are part of that process and will help Saudi Arabia broaden political participation and give our people a greater role in government decision-making.”

After a period of study and consultation, Saudi Arabia has now established the basic regulations and systematic procedures for the election process and has drafted the necessary regulations and resolutions for holding elections.  In addition, committees have worked through the details for the establishment of election centers, the process for voter registration, the registration of candidates, the deadline for the nomination and the process of electing members in 178 municipal councils across all cities and villages in the 13 provinces of the Kingdom.  Details are expected to be released this fall.

“This is one element of our comprehensive agenda for political and economic reform,” said Prince Bandar.  “Saudi Arabia is undergoing dramatic change as we continue to work toward the modernization and growth of our society, but at the same time remaining rooted in our Islamic traditions and values.”