Milestones in Saudi Arabia as Women are Appointed to Head the Kingdom’s Stock Exchange, Major Newspaper for the First Time

For the first time in Saudi Arabia, a woman will head up the Kingdom’s stock exchange and one of the country’s daily newspapers as incremental progress toward equality for women continues.

The appointment of Sarah Al-Suhaimi to chair the Saudi stock exchange, or Tadawul, is in line with an ambitious economic and social reform program Vision 2030. One of its goals is to develop women’s role in the economy and increase their participation in the workforce to 30 percent from 22 percent in coming years, Reuters reports.

Vision 2030 seeks to promote women's role in the Saudi economy.

Vision 2030 seeks to promote women’s role in the Saudi economy.

Reuters reports that Suhaimi, who became the first female chief executive of a Saudi investment bank when she took that post at NCB Capital in 2014, is one of only a few women with a top job in Saudi finance. Her father Jammaz headed the Capital Market Authority between 2004 and 2006.

In Jeddah, the English-language Saudi Gazette announced on its website that Somayya Jabarti will take the helm at the newspaper, the first woman ever to hold the editor-in-chief position of a Saudi daily newspaper.

Her predecessor Khaled Almaeena wrote on Sunday that Ms Jabarti has worked with him for almost 13 years and is a determined and dedicated journalist. He wrote that “it was not a question of gender but of merit that decided and earned her this opportunity,” according to the National.