Saudi foreign minister sees deals with UK during crown prince’s visit

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir and his British counterpart Boris Johnson tour the site of the first British embassy in the historic quarter of Jeddah. Saudi Arabia expects to sign agreements with Britain covering a range of issues during Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit to London. (File Photo: AFP)
Updated 05 March 2018
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Saudi foreign minister sees deals with UK during crown prince’s visit

LONDON: Saudi Arabia expects to sign agreements with Britain covering a range of issues during Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit to London this week, Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said on Monday.
Britain’s planned exit from the European Union did not reduce its attractiveness as an investment destination, the minister told reporters, and he said he expected the crown prince’s visit to take bilateral relations to a higher level.
“Our relationship is so strong that the talks will be broad and wide ranging. There will be agreements and memorandums of understanding signed in a number of areas involving a broad range of issues,” he said during a media briefing at the Saudi embassy.
Al-Jubeir provided no further details on the agreements nor on the precise agenda for the crown prince’s visit. He declined to comment on any progress in plans to list giant oil firm Saudi Aramco and whether that might happen in London or New York.
Asked whether Britain’s departure from the EU, scheduled for March 2019, would affect Riyadh’s view of how attractive Britain is as an investment destination, Al-Jubeir said: “We don’t think so. We think that Britain is one of the great powers.
“British ingenuity and British technology and British know-how is not going to change whether you’re part of the EU or not part of the EU.”


Disappointed fans hail improved performance by Saudi Green Falcons but defeat ends World Cup dream

Updated 21 June 2018
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Disappointed fans hail improved performance by Saudi Green Falcons but defeat ends World Cup dream

  • A fan named Yousif, who watched the match at the General Sports Authority viewing tent, was happy that the game at least was close this time.
  • Saudi Arabia will face off against Egypt, who also lost their opening two group A games against Uruguay and Russia, on June 25.

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s World Cup dreams were shattered after Uruguay beat the Green Falcons 1-0 in the second of the three group-stage matches. Most Saudi fans in Jeddah were much happier with the team’s performance in game two, following the resounding 5-0 defeat by host nation Russia in the opening match on June 14, but still bitterly disappointed by the loss, which means they cannot qualify for the knockout stages.

Yousif, who watched the match at the General Sports Authority viewing tent, was happy that the game at least was close this time. “Although we lost, the performance was much better than the first game with Russia. I hope we win our next match,” he said.

Nasrah, who watched the game with her two sons, said: “I was really disappointed because we played good today and nothing less than a win should have been acceptable. I am also disappointed to see the looks on my boys faces when the game ended as they were hoping for a win.”

Khalid Al-Raghbi said at least it had been a good match to watch. “We played a bit better today,” he added. “I wish we would have won but at least we performed better than our last match against Russia.”

Before the game, Ibrahim Al-Turki had been optimistic about Saudi Arabia’s chances. “We didn’t expect today’s result. I was thinking that Saudi would win by two goals, and Uruguay would score one,” he said.

The result was especially disappointing given the close result and the number of chances the Saudis had to score, said Badr, who added: “I don’t know what to tell you because we are deeply disappointed. At least if we lost with a big defeat I would say we deserved it. We had the potential but we could not score.”

Shadi Al-Ghamdi said he wished the national team’s much improved performance in their second game had been more evident in their first. “I am very proud of the players, I thought they played very well. I just wish they had played like this against Russia," he said.

Safah was less complimentary and said that the Saudi players had let their fans down, adding: “They seemed scared whenever they attempted to score any goals.”

Saudi Arabia will face off against Egypt, who also lost their opening two group A games against Uruguay and Russia, on June 25. It will be the final game in the competition for both sides, with only pride to play for, as they battle it out to see who will finish third in the group and who will be left in bottom spot.