MCI, Imposing a Fine of SR 300.000 and 14-month Imprisonment against a Citizen and Three Expats, Condemned of Commercial Concealment

11 Apr 2019


The Ministry of Commerce and Investment has defamed a citizen and three expatriates of Indian nationality, convicted of commercial concealment, as per the judicial ruling. The citizen has been enabling the expatriates to engage in commercial activities by using his C.R. and working for their own account in the wholesale and retail of foodstuffs in Sakaka, Northern Region.
The sentence issued by the Criminal Court of Sakaka included a fine of SR 300.000, six-month imprisonment for the first expat and four months for the second and third expat, closure of the Est., liquidation of the trade activity, cancellation of the license, writing off the C.R., prohibiting the owner of practicing the same trade activity, deporting the expats from the Kingdom, after the execution of the verdict, and not to be allowed to return for work, besides defamation by publishing the ruling in a local newspaper at the expense of the violators.
In details, MCI inspection teams received a tip about a suspected case of commercial concealment at an Est. for wholesale and retail of foodstuffs in Sakaka. MCI inspectors carried out the necessary investigation, and found evidences, documents and money transfer in large amounts, also more than half million riyals, representing the trade revenue, were seized as well.
Accordingly, it has been proved that the citizen has enabled the three expatriates to engage in unauthorized business activity and to work for their own account. The case was referred to the Public Prosecution and then to the judicial authority for taking the legal measures against the violators, in accordance with the Anti-Commercial Concealment Law.
The Ministry of Commerce and Investment calls on all citizens and residents in all regions of the Kingdom to report cases of commercial concealment through the Ministry's Consumer Call Center (1900) or through the application of a Commercial Violation Report, or via the Ministry's website. Notably, MCI is granting an award of up to 30% of the total sentenced fines after collection. The fine may reach one million riyals against each violator.

It is worth mentioning that the Royal Supreme Authority has approved recently the implementation of the recommendations of the National Program for Combating the Commercial Concealment, which involves ten government agencies. This program aims to address and combat commercial concealment in all sectors, besides developing relevant regulations and legislations, also stimulating e-commerce and using technical solutions. This program aims as well at regulating and organizing the financial transactions to eliminate transferring of money abroad, as well as enhancing development in the private sector, also creating attractive jobs for Saudis and encouraging them to invest in various trade activities, more over finding solutions to the problem of illegal ownership of foreigners in the private sector.

Last Modified 14 Apr 2019