What is Merchants Chair?

It is a place where businessmen, government officials and diplomatic corps (ambassadors and consuls) meets to discuss all problems and unresolved issues and to find the best solutions. 

The idea of the Merchants Chair?

The idea of the Merchants Chair inspired from the place where people in old Jeddah gathered to discuss and resolve families and neighborhood issues at aim of reinforcing ties and relations as well as settling problems. The Merchants Chair, which is under the umbrella of the chamber board of directors,  is found for almost the same reason that to communicate with all business sectors and related government officials to discuss significant business issues and matters. 

To meet and communicate
Discuss business issues in Jeddah generally
Discuss the economic and social aspects and raise them for public discussion
Build a specific opinion to be addressed to concerned authorities
Resolve family businesses conflicts and disputes 

The Permanent Location:

The Merchants Chair meetings are held currently in the main building of the Jeddah Chamber - 11th floor. A gathering hall to be equipped then either in the ground floor or in the first floor as available.

The membership: 

1. The Jeddah Chamber board of directors members
2. Chairmen and vice-chairmen of previous session of board of directors 
3. The chairmen of the sectoral committees in the chamber (the commercial committee, the industrial committee, the service committee, the contractors committee and transport and ports committee)
4. Powerful and Influential public figures who contributed to serve sectors
5. Editor-in-chief:
Editor-in-chief of local newspaper
Editor-in-chief of economic pages 
Specialized writers 
6. Members of board of directors of large Joint stock companies
7. The Merchants Chair also hosts guests proper to the topic being discussed like: 
Government officials
juristic persons
Ambassadors and Consuls
The membership of more than 250 members include the following categories: 
Services (financial, banking, building and construction, health, education(
Professionals (lawyers, chartered accountants, consultants)
Government sector (government officials , mayors) 

Work process: 
1. The session of the Merchants Chairs is addressed by the board of directors chairman; then he delegate a professional whose expert and specialized in the topic being discussed to head the meeting and write recommendations. 
2. The topics and issues under discussion are being selected according to the board of directors chairman directives. 
3. Divide the members into groups. Each group discuss topics and issues in certain  specialty like (social topics,   economic, or any other issues and problems)
4. Assign a secretariat for the Merchants Chair that its main responsibilities are to follow-up sessions and documenting and writing records
5. The secretariat prepares a report about recommendations to the chairman for  right decision to be made.  
6. Meeting invitations: 
Invitations sent to all or some of board of directors members as the chairman sees it appropriate 
Some officials and guests are invited as the directives of the board of directors chairman 

7. The frequency of meetings: 
  • - Monthly meetings
  • - Weekly meetings 

- General social issues: 
Issues concern society are discussed in the monthly meetings. Issues like  

-Specific issues: 
The members discuss issues related to family businesses in the weekly meetings 

8. The Merchants Chair secretariat:
- Coordinate with the board of directors chairman and the general secretariat for scheduling the topics to be discussed in the weekly and monthly meetings 
- Keep lists of permanent members and target members 
- Send invitations to members and guests 
- Coordinate and prepare for meetings and putting down recommendations 
- Provide members with copies of the recommendations after being approved from the board of directors chairman and the meeting chairman in charge 
- Follow-up the implementation of the recommendations by the chamber’s general secretariat

The previous meetings:

- Meeting with the president of The Saudi Ports Authority
- Meeting with the president National Anti-Corruption Commission
- Meeting with the General Director of Customs department
- Meeting with the Minister of Labor