The President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev held a meeting with heads of the leading companies and financial structures of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the city of Jeddah.
The Minister of Investment Khalid al-Falih, as well as heads of around 20 major companies and corporations of the kingdom, such as ACWA Power, SABIC, Saudi National Bank, Al Rajhi Capital, Ma’aden, Petromin, Jamjoom Pharma, SEDCO, Salic, Albawani, Ajlan & Bros, Desert Technologies and others, attended the event.
During the course of foreign visits of the President, meetings with representatives of the business community are traditional, they allow to determine the common interests, prospects of industrial cooperation and investment collaboration.
Uzbekistan and Saudi Arabia have tremendous potential to bring relations to a qualitatively new level, primarily in the trade and economic sphere. In recent years, meetings of the Intergovernmental Commission and the Business Council are held regularly. Trade volumes are growing, and joint ventures are being created.
The President noted that during the talks held yesterday with the Crown Prince, agreements were reached on a multiple increases in bilateral trade, full support for business initiatives and financing of investment projects.
All this opens up broad opportunities for business partnerships. In particular, Uzbekistan is creating the most favourable conditions for entrepreneurs and expanding the amount of foreign capital.
The experience of a number of Saudi companies, which have been successfully operating in Uzbekistan for several years, was noted. For instance, a major energy project worth $2 billion 600 million in cooperation with ACWA Power has been launched.
The participant’s attention is drawn to the unprecedented outcomes of the Uzbek-Saudi Business Council held prior to the visit. In particular, following the visit, the agreements on the implementation of projects worth more than $14 billion have been signed.
It is emphasized that there have been no such breakthrough agreements for 30 years, and work on creating better conditions for the Saudi partners will be extended.
The Uzbek President called on Saudi companies to work even more closely to develop and implement new projects.
During the meeting, President Shavkat Mirziyoyev revealed his vision of further building bilateral cooperation. Thus, Saudi business is invited to participate in the privatization processes of large banks, and industrial and infrastructure facilities held in Uzbekistan. One of the most promising for the implementation of joint projects is named the sphere of “Green Energy” and “Green Economy”.
The Uzbek side, as noted, is ready for active joint work on the construction of wind power plants, production of «green» hydrogen, development of alternative energy, deepening of the digitalization of industry and conducting joint scientific research.
The President emphasized Uzbekistan’s interest in expanding partnerships in the areas of the digital economy, bio- and nanotechnology, software, innovation and artificial intelligence.
It is proposed to pay special attention to the implementation of projects on the production of food products, in the spheres of healthcare and tourism.
Furthermore, in Uzbekistan, with the participation of the Saudi Fund for Development, it is planned to continue work on improving infrastructure projects in the areas of water and electricity supply.
Referring to the invitation to cooperation, the heads of companies, holdings and corporations of Saudi Arabia highly appreciated the conditions created in Uzbekistan for active business. In their speeches, they shared their plans to implement joint projects in the country, and their vision of the prospects for developing contacts and interaction in a wide range of areas.
President Shavkat Mirziyoyev carefully listened to the proposals and opinions of the Saudi partners and outlined that all projects will be closely monitored.
The responsible officials have been instructed to adopt a complex «Roadmap» with the indication of effective mechanisms and specific terms of implementation. Thus, the heads of the relevant ministries and departments will be personally responsible for the implementation of all the agreements reached as a part of the visit.
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