Fusing Vision 2030 with Belt Road Initiative

Updated 03 September 2016

Fusing Vision 2030 with Belt Road Initiative

BEIJING: A panel discussion entitled “Saudi Vision 2030 and the Belt Road Initiative: Together for a Promising Future” was held in Beijing during the visit of Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

Energy, Industry and Mineral Resources Minister Khalid Al-Falih, Commerce and Investment Minister Majid Al-Qassabi, Telecommunications and IT Minister Mohammed Al-Suwaiyel, Culture and Information Minister Adel Al-Toraifi and Yasir Al-Rumayan, managing director of the Public Investment Fund, participated in the panel discussion.
At the beginning of the discussion, Al-Qassabi highlighted available investment opportunities for Chinese companies in the Kingdom.
He noted that the Kingdom’s natural resources as well as its geographical location plus Chinese economic power provided great economic and investment opportunities for Chinese companies.
Al-Suwaiyel spoke of the Kingdom’s great progress in the field of communications and information technology.
“The overall effectiveness of the Kingdom’s sector for communications and information technology depends on four key players — the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, the Communications and Information Technology Commission, the companies carrying out the work and the Saudi Post,” he said.
He noted that youth represented 60 percent of the Saudi population. He said that Saudis working in the sector were 20 percent with the remaining 80 percent being non-Saudis.
Al-Suwaiyel stressed that the ministry had held meetings with regional and international companies, including a Chinese company, for the purpose of training Saudi youth in the field of communications and information technology.
Al-Toraifi lauded the keenness of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman in supporting and improving bilateral relations between Saudi Arabia and China in all fields. He pointed out the great respect King Salman had for the Chinese people and their rich culture.
“I’m glad to be on this panel, and I have the highest respect for the Chinese people. We know that China is a land of wisdom, and have had the opportunity to visit the Chinese Museum and be briefed on various aspects of China’s ancient culture and heritage,” Al-Toraifi said.
“In my capacity as the minister of culture and information, I also serve as a member of the Council of Political and Security Affairs. In addition, I am a member of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs and thus, I have experience in the security and political spheres as well as on the cultural side,” he said.
“I learned a great deal from King Salman who devotes much of his time to reading. This has pushed me to follow his example. I remember that the king is known in the Arab world as a friend of journalists. I remembered this because I know the large number of books on China that he has read. He has the greatest respect for the Chinese people and their ancient culture.”
Al-Toraifi pointed out that King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif had directed the ministers and the delegation to introduce Saudi Vision 2030 to the Chinese people by fully exploiting the visit of Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to the People’s Republic of China.
He pointed out that the ministers accompanying the deputy crown prince sought to introduce the vision in the most advantageous way for the Chinese and in attempting to do so, they concluded that economy, politics, charity and development should all be linked together.
He highlighted the favorable outcomes of the deputy crown prince’s visit to China through meetings with Chinese officials and the signing of agreements and memorandums of understanding between the two countries in all fields.
He considered the Belt Road Initiative one of the main pillars of the Saudi Vision 2030 which would seek to make China among the Kingdom’s biggest economic partners.
Al-Toraifi stressed his personal keenness on improving cultural exchanges between Saudi Arabia and China in order to achieve greater convergence between the two friendly peoples.
He added that there were efforts being made to present Chinese culture to Saudi society and Saudi culture to Chinese society.
“With this aim, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) launched a Chinese-language website six months ago. One of the things that we have done during this visit is to hold meetings with Chinese officials and sign memorandums of understanding with them. Our goal is to bring the Saudi and Chinese peoples closer and to increase tourism between the two countries,” he said.
Regarding the Kingdom’s foreign investments, Al-Rumayan of the Public Investment Fund stressed that there had been many discussions of investment opportunities with Chinese companies in the fields of infrastructure, construction, advanced technology and others.
He mentioned that there were great investment opportunities for Chinese companies in the Kingdom, and he pointed out that there are multi-partnerships among Saudi and Chinese companies as well as joint investment on the international level.
Al-Falih spoke of the importance of the visit paid by the deputy crown prince to China. He lauded Saudi-Chinese strategic relations, particularly in the field of energy.
He added that Saudi Arabia and China had signed a number of agreements pertaining to energy. He said connections between the two countries provided more investment opportunities and he specifically mentioned the possibilities that are a part of the Saudi Vision 2030.
He pointed out a number of investment opportunities in the fields of infrastructure, industries, technology and other development.

DiplomaticQuarter: US ambassador lauds Saudi Arabia for successful Hajj season

Updated 06 August 2020

DiplomaticQuarter: US ambassador lauds Saudi Arabia for successful Hajj season

  • The envoy also praised Saudi hospitality during the Hajj season

RIYADH: US Ambassador to Saudi Arabia John Abizaid has lauded the Kingdom for its successful and safe organization of the curtailed Hajj pilgrimage amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. 

The envoy also praised Saudi hospitality during the Hajj season and expressed his appreciation for the country’s generosity.

“On behalf of the US Mission to Saudi Arabia, I extend our best wishes to all Muslims in Saudi Arabia and around the world on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha,” Abizaid said in a statement.

He thanked the Saudi leadership for the care and services provided to the specially selected group of around 1,000 pilgrims of various nationalities allowed to perform Hajj.

“I would also like to express our deep appreciation to King Salman, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Mohammed Saleh Benten, and Minister of Islamic Affairs Sheikh Dr. Abdullatif Al-Asheikh for the government’s actions to protect the health of those participating in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage. 

“I also extend our gratitude to the people of Saudi Arabia for their kind hospitality, friendship, and generosity during Eid and throughout the eight decades of our two countries’ close partnership. May the prayers for peace of all people around the world be heard,” he added.

Separately, the World Health Organization (WHO) also commended Saudi Arabia for its efforts in organizing Hajj.

WHO Director General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus praised the steps taken by the Kingdom to ensure the safety of pilgrims and said the preventive measures had set an example for other countries to follow in working toward lifting COVID-19 restrictions.