(MENAFN - Morocco World News) Rabat – After a few months afterreceived the right to attend mixed-gender sporting events and drive cars, women in Saudi Arabia have now been officially sanctioned to legally start their own businesses without the consent of male guardians.
The new policy marks a major step away from the strict guardianship system that has existed for decades, under which Saudi women who wish to do any government paperwork are subject to the guardianship of male members of their families – usually their father, husband, or brother.
'Women can now launch their own businesses and benefit from [governmental] e-services without having to prove consent from a guardian,' the Ministry of Commerce and Investment said in a recent statement.
'No need for a guardian's permission. Saudi women are free to start their own business freely,' Abdel Rahman Al Hussein, Ministry's spokesman, said in a tweet.
The easing of restrictions on female entrepreneurship comes under the vast programme of reform that has been spurred by Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. His 'Vision 2030' plan for economic and social reforms has notably enabled women to carry out certain administrative procedures on their own.
These reforms were largely welcomed both at home and abroad, but they are also being met by some discontent in ultra-conservative circles.