Meet the first woman to work at a petrol station in Saudi Arabia

Mervat Bukhari decided to become the first Saudi woman to run a gas station in Saudi Arabia. (Supplied)

When Mervat Bukhari decided to become the first Saudi woman to run a gas station in Saudi Arabia, she thought of adding a feminine touch to the station to make it one of a kind.

Bukhari confirmed to Al Arabiya that she aspires to make of her work location “the best digital gas station in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East, with its high performance, highest standards of quality and cleanliness”.

The purpose of the station is to provide a live model on the ground for fuel stations and to take into account the needs of its employees.

About her early beginnings, Bukhari told Al Arabiya that she began writing poetry and working in the media field as a magazine editor. She then moved to work as the editor-in-chief of the daily Maraya newspaper, which she still heads and owns.

Bukhari explained that she was working in the media sector which opened opportunities to her to meet with businesswomen, and later led to the opening of her own beauty center in Dammam.

During her media career, Bukhari continued with a doctor working in Haqil Group, where she held press interviews about women’s beauty and the services provided to Saudi women for the treatment of cosmetic and postpartum problems.

These connections opened up for Bukhari the opportunity to serve as president of the group’s media division, which involves a set specialties including cosmetics, obesity, plastic surgery and orthodontics, as well as marketing and management of fuel stations.

“Through this launch, I have proposed many new ideas that have been developed from within the station with the vision of a woman capable of understanding the demands of the community, beginning with adding plants as an aesthetic touch to the ceiling and the outer facade of the site, providing five-star furnished luxury apartments, as well as offering rest house type of facilities for travelers -this allows travelers the option to rent for a full 24 hours,” she said.

She added that “We have taken advantage of the station’s location on the travel road to support passengers and provide clean toilets.

“Several additional proposals that support women drivers in the future would include a digital station that will be operational without the need to pay money. The prince of the Eastern Region approved another suggestion regarding opening a permanent headquarters for productive families and professionals in the field of cooking at an affordable price,” she added.

Bukhari explained that her goal is “to support women and protect them from sitting in the streets facing the heat, cold or the wind,” indicating that the site of the station is located close to families' hiking paths so it will contribute to offer support to them.

Bukhari explained that “The purpose of the project is to preserve the dignity of Saudi women and provide them with a suitable place, while providing a security team and security cameras around the clock.

“My goal and my future plan is for my daughters to enter the station safely and without fear or tension as they find in our stores a comfortable an respectful service,” she said.

Bukhari explained that the station “can contribute to supporting 40 families throughout the year and providing economic support that is not periodic but as a constant income.”

She stressed that “Saudi women” have proved efficiency in all professions and sectors that have been assigned to them displaying excellence and love for excellence and the ability to work and achieve goals.

As for the difficulties she faced, Bukhari said that “nothing is difficult before ambition and success: “if you believe in the value of work and its usefulness to the citizens, all the difficulties will vanish when you hear the citizen’s thankful words: Allah bless you the way you honored our humanity,” she said.

Last Update: Wednesday, 10 January 2018 KSA 17:36 - GMT 14:36

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