Small investors not happy with Jeddah Chamber of Commerce

JEDDAH — Small investors and businessmen are not happy with the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI). They allege that it does not care for medium scale projects and that its role is confined to the attestation and certification of the documents, according to a recent report in the Arabic daily Okaz.

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Published: Wed 2 Nov 2005, 10:08 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 5:13 PM

"Small investors don't benefit from the JCCI with the exception of the paper work. I precisely want to say the only service it renders to this segment of businessmen is the attestation of the documents," Salem Muhammad Al Balwai, owner of a home appliances shop, told the daily.

"I don't remember that the chamber has ever made any plans to help the small investors to invest in small-scale projects or cottage industries. The chamber totally ignores this segment of investors who constitute the majority of its members," he added.

He said he doubted if the general secretariat in the chamber understood the importance of this sector to the country's economy. "In advanced countries economists give due attention to this sector because of its significant contribution to the Gross National Product (GNP)," he said.

Muhammad Ibrahim Al Ameri, readymade clothes retailer said he did not have any relationship with the chamber because the chamber does not provide any service that he may benefit from.

"I hold the chamber responsible for its total failure to open channels of contact and dialogue with this large segment of businessmen. Small investors always look for the help of the chamber especially in the financing field," he said.

"The planners in the JCCI may not be aware of the simple economic principles that the small investors constitute the nucleus of the country's economy because they are the largest in number and if they are assisted in promoting and expanding their businesses that will definitely be reflected in the country's economic growth. Thus the big shots in the chamber must understand that without this sector the country's economy will never develop," he added.

Another small investor Hassan Khaled Abu Jabel said that in the absence of chamber's guidelines he incurred huge financial losses as he closed down his plastic factory.

"People sitting in the chamber wrongly believe that the chamber's role is confined to the paper work. One of the basic tasks of the chamber is to acquaint the investors with the prospects of the investments as well as the investment opportunities and their feasibility," he said.

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