RIYADH: Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhemi arrives in Saudi Arabia on Monday at the head of a high-level ministerial delegation to the Kingdom.
Al-Kadhemi and Iraq’s ministers of oil, electricity, finance, planning, health and agriculture among others are expected to meet Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and visit the Neom megaproject on the northwest coast.
There will also be a meeting of the Saudi-Iraqi Coordination Council, which aims to strengthen strategic cooperation between the two countries.
Al-Kadhemi enjoys popular support from Iraqis who wish their country to disengage from Iran, Dr. Mutlaq Al-Mutairi, a professor of political media, told Arab News.
“In the light of this support, all that is required is the political will to achieve sovereignty and independence for Iraq. It is not simple, but the opportunities are great.”
Saudi Arabia was in a strong position because the Kingdom was entering Iraq as an investor, which would bring economic benefits to the Iraqi people, Al-Mutairi said, provided the investments were protected from Iranian interference.
After his Saudi visit, Al-Kadhemi will travel to Iran for talks with Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei.
An Iraqi delegation led by Deputy Prime Minister Ali Abdulamir Allawi, who is also the finance minister, arrived in the Kingdom on Sunday.
The delegation will hold meetings of the Saudi-Iraqi Coordination Council, which aims to strengthen ties between the two countries at all levels. The officials will interact with relevant authorities to develop partnerships between the private sectors on both sides and explore new opportunities in various sectors such as economy, development, security, investment, tourism, culture, and media.
The delegation also seeks to deepen mutual collaboration on key regional and international issues.