Tuesday, 29 November, 2022

Saudi energy minister meets top Indian officials to strengthen economic ties

  • Sun Online Desk
  • 25th October, 2022 08:56:00 PM
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Saudi energy minister meets top Indian officials to strengthen economic ties
Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman held talks with top Indian officials. (Saudi Press Agency)

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RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman visited India on Saturday, and met top Indian officials as the Kingdom strengthens its energy ties with the second-largest Asian economy.

The energy minister, who visited the Indian capital New Delhi for a day, held talks with Indian Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal; Petroleum Minister Hardeep Singh; Electricity Minister Raj Kumar Singh, and several Indian business leaders.

Ahead of the visit, citing people with knowledge of the matter, Economic Times reported that the Gujarat coast in India could soon link up to the Middle East with deep sea cables.

This would create a renewable energy grid as Saudi Arabia and India expand their energy ties.

Earlier in September, Saudi Arabia’s Ambassador to India Saleh bin Eid Al-Hussaini vowed to boost and strengthen relations between Riyadh and New Delhi during his tenure.

“This would be my endeavor to consolidate and accelerate the growth of our mutual and beneficial partnership and strengthen the friendly bond between the people of our countries,” said Al-Hussaini.

The partnership between Saudi Arabia and India reached new heights when Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman visited New Delhi in February 2019. In October 2019, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited the Kingdom, which resulted in the two nations establishing the Strategic Partnership Council.

In September, Indian External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, during an exclusive interview with Arab News, said that India and Saudi Arabia are important players in the emerging multipolar world order, and there are several areas in which both countries are working together.

“India and Saudi Arabia are major economies and play an important role in shaping the global economy. The two countries are substantial economic partners, with trade being valued at approximately $42.86 billion during the fiscal year (April 2021 to March 2022),” he added.

Energy also plays a crucial role in the trade ties between India and Saudi Arabia as New Delhi imports about 18 and 22 percent of its crude oil and liquefied petroleum gas demands, respectively, from the Kingdom.

Relations between Saudi Arabia and India have been historically strong for several decades. Indians constitute the largest community of foreign workers in the Kingdom, and one of their home country’s biggest sources of inward remittances.

Saudi Arabia’s trade relationship with India was majorly confined to energy in the initial years, but now, both nations have widened their ties into other fields, including security, investment, health, food security, and culture.

Source: Arab News