Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia sign multiple investment deals during JEC meeting

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The Saudi delegation was led by Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim, Saudi Arabia’s deputy minister for international affairs at the Ministry of Labor and Social Development. (AN Photo)
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The Saudi delegation was led by Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim, Saudi Arabia’s deputy minister for international affairs at the Ministry of Labor and Social Development. (AN Photo)
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The Saudi delegation was led by Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim, Saudi Arabia’s deputy minister for international affairs at the Ministry of Labor and Social Development. (AN Photo)
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The Saudi delegation was led by Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim, Saudi Arabia’s deputy minister for international affairs at the Ministry of Labor and Social Development. (AN Photo)
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Updated 13 February 2020

Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia sign multiple investment deals during JEC meeting

  • A 40-member Saudi delegation held several meetings with officials in Dhaka during the 13th session of Bangladesh–Saudi Arabia Joint Commission
  • Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim: Today we witness a new chapter in this bilateral relationship by agreeing on and signing the Dhaka agreements

DHAKA: Bangladesh and Saudi Arabia have struck a number of initial agreements for investment in the Asian nation.
A 40-member Saudi delegation held several meetings with officials in Dhaka during the 13th session of Bangladesh–Saudi Arabia Joint Commission. 
It was led by Mahir Abdul Rahman Gassim, Saudi Arabia’s deputy minister for international affairs at the Ministry of Labor and Social Development.
Also joining the JEC delegation, which meets every two years, were seven of the biggest companies in the Kingdom, including Saudi Aramco and ACWA Power.
“Today we witness a new chapter in this bilateral relationship by agreeing on and signing the Dhaka agreements,” Gassim said in a statement following the meeting.
Red Sea Gateway Terminal (RSGT), a leading port developer of the Kingdom, is interested in developing Bangladesh’s main Chottogram port which deals with more than 80 percent of the country’s trade. 
“The RSGT wants to make the investment in Public Private Partnership (PPP) form. To bring any investment in this mode, we need to have an agreement between the two governments,” Rafikul Islam Khan, joint secretary of the Bangladeshi shipping ministry told Arab News. 
“As soon as the Saudi government will sign the PPP agreement with Bangladesh, we will move forward with RSGT’s investment proposals,” he said. 
Chottogram port authority is conducting a feasibility study on the size of investment required for further expansion of the port facilities, he added.
“An MoU has also been signed between Bangladesh Sugar and Food Industries Corporation (BSFIC) and ACWA power on generating 180 MW Solar power,“
Mir Khairul Alam, joint secretary of Bangladesh Industry Ministry told Arab News.
A proposal for a $1 billion telecommunications infrastructure project led by Teletalk Bangladesh Limited, a state-run mobile operator, was also discussed with Saudi Arabia’s Al-Jomiah Group.
The JEC meeting identified a wide range of areas to boost trade and investment between the two countries.
The 14th session of the JEC will be held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.


Saudi minister: OPEC+ will take responsible approach to virus

Updated 26 February 2020

Saudi minister: OPEC+ will take responsible approach to virus

  • Saudi Arabia supports the further oil production cut, but Russia is yet to announce its final position on the matter

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s energy minister said on Tuesday he was confident that OPEC and its partner oil-producing nations, the so-called OPEC+ group, would respond responsibly to the spread of the coronavirus.

He also said Saudi Arabia and Russia would continue to engage regarding oil policy.

“Everything serious requires being attended to,” the minister, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Salman, told reporters at an industry conference in Riyadh.

An OPEC+ committee this month recommended the group deepen its output cuts by an additional 600,000 barrels per day.

Saudi Arabia supports the further oil production cut, but Russia is yet to announce its final position on the matter.

The minister said he was still talking with Moscow and that he was confident of Riyadh’s partnership with the rest of the OPEC+ group.

“We did not run out of ideas, we have not closed our phones. There is always a good way of communicating through conference calls,” he said.

Regarding the coronavirus, which has impacted OPEC member Iran, he said OPEC+ members should not be complacent about the virus but added he was confident every OPEC+ member was a responsible and responsive producer.

The flu-like SARS-CoV-2 virus, which first broke out in China, has now spread to more than 20 countries.

“Of course there is an impact and we are assessing, but we’ll do whatever we can in our next meeting and we’ll address that issue,” UAE Energy Minister Suhail Al-Mazrouei said at the same industry conference.

Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser on Monday said he expected a short-lived impact on oil demand.

“We think this is short term and I am confident that in the second half of the year there is going to be an improvement on the demand side, especially from China,” he said.

Oil climbed on Tuesday as investors sought bargains after crude benchmarks slumped almost 4 percent in the previous session, although concerns about the global spread of the virus capped gains.