Al-Assaf leads Saudi delegation

Ibrahim Al-Assaf, minister of state and member of the Cabinet, arrives in Hamburg, Germany, on Thursday to attend the G-20 Summit. (AFP)
Updated 07 July 2017
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Al-Assaf leads Saudi delegation

RIYADH: Ibrahim Al-Assaf, minister of state and member of the Cabinet, is leading the Saudi delegation attending the two-day Group of Twenty (G-20) Summit, beginning Friday in Hamburg, Germany.
On behalf of King Salman, Al-Assaf will lead the Kingdom’s delegation at the summit, SPA, the official news agency, said Thursday.
Notably, Germany is holding the presidency of the G-20 summit this year and Hamburg is hosting the annual summit, where more than 20 heads of state or government, as well representatives of international organizations, will meet and discuss economic and financial issues.
Hamburg is a major trade hub, with Europe’s third-largest port, cutting-edge architecture, a cosmopolitan atmosphere and a history of international relations.
The meeting assumes significance as a platform to set the economic agenda for the 20 major economies in the world, with the G-20 leaders discussing global economic growth, international trade and financial-market regulation.
This year’s summit will focus on ensuring stability, improving sustainability and accountability, addressing issues of politics, economics, finance, trade, employment and achieving goals of sustainable development.
“The G-20 summit will focus not just on growth, but on sustainable growth,” German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a video message available on the summit’s website.
That would be a win-win situation for everybody, she added.
The visiting Saudi delegation is also expected to sign agreements with the member countries to further enhance mutual cooperation.
The heads of the World Trade Organization, World Bank and International Monetary Fund have called on G-20 leaders to take “decisive actions” to deepen global trade integration.
Roberto Azevedo, Jim Yong Kim and Christine Lagarde said in a joint statement Thursday that too many trade barriers have been preserved and new ones created over recent years.
They wrote that “such policies can cause a chain reaction, as other countries adopt similar measures with the effect of lowering overall growth, reducing output, and harming workers.”
They said that one part of reinvigorating trade needs “is to remove trade barriers and reduce subsidies and other measures that distort trade.”
Trade is likely to be a contentious issue at the G-20 summit.
China, meanwhile, stressed the need for friendly economic cooperation with the US after recent comments from President Donald Trump suggested he may be reviving his criticism of Beijing’s trade practices.
Zhu Guangyao, a Chinese deputy finance minister, said before the start of G-20 meetings in Hamburg working together was a “win-win” situation.
He said: “China and the US have very practical economic teams, we all know that peace can bring win-win outcomes, while fighting will leave everyone the loser.”
He said the two countries have maintained close cooperation since meetings in April between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping and that China hopes to “follow the important consensus reached at the (April) Mar-a-Lago meetings at the upcoming meetings of the G-20 summit.”
— With inputs from AP


Saudi Arabia welcomes US decision on Iran oil sanction waivers

Updated 52 min 53 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia welcomes US decision on Iran oil sanction waivers

  • The Saudi minister said Iran uses state income to finance their dangerous policies
  • Saudi Arabia will work with other oil producing countries to stabilize international market

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia has welcomed US Foreign Minister Mike Pompeo’s announcement that waivers on the sanctions on Iranian oil exports will be lifted, Saudi state agency SPA reported.

Saudi Arabia believes the US decision is a necessary step to pressure the Iranian government to stop jeopardizing peace and end their global support for terrorism, the Saudi Foreign Minister, Ibrahim bin Abdulaziz Al-Assaf, said.

The Iranian regime uses the country’s income to finance dangerous policies without any consideration for international law, the minster added.

International pressures on Iran must continue until it stops interfering in the domestic affairs of other countries, he stressed.

Saudi Arabia will continue their strict adherence to the policies, which aim to stabilize international markets, and will not produce oil beyond the balance, Al-Assaf said.

The Kingdom will cooperate with other oil producing countries to produce enough oil for consumers, he added.