Saudi investments in India could reach $100bn, says crown prince

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said IT was an area where he saw opportunities for Indian investment
Saudi investments in India could reach $100bn, says crown prince
India and Saudi Arabia signed five bilateral agreements in areas of investment, tourism, housing and information and broadcasting on Wednesday during delegation-level talks led by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
By James Mathew
Thu 21 Feb 2019 09:27 AM

India and Saudi Arabia signed five bilateral agreements in areas of investment, tourism, housing and information and broadcasting on Wednesday during delegation-level talks led by Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

A memorandum of understanding was also signed on investing in the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund of India to step up Saudi Arabia’s investments in energy, industry and mineral resources during the Crown Prince’s visit.

The Saudi side also signed the framework agreement on the International Solar Alliance (ISA).

The Saudi Prince also hoped the investment opportunities for his country in India could exceed $100 billion over the next two years, without givng any details.

“We understand that India has more than $100 billion in investment opportunities. We want to invest in a way that’s beneficial for both countries,” said Prince Mohammed during a joint press conference with the Indian PM.

“India is very strong in the area of IT. Saudi Arabia is currently developing its capabilities in the IT sector and this is one area where there could be a lot of opportunities for the two countries to co-operate,” he added.

He said he hoped to further strengthen trade and investments in India, following the series of agreements signed in 2016 during the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the kingdom.

“We are currently diversifying in the petrochemicals sector and keen to increase our investments in this sector,” the Saudi Crown Prince said.

Common threat

The Saudi Crown Prince, who is also kingdom’s Minister for Defence, was on a two-day visit to India, held meetings with India's foreign minister Sushma Swaraj.

He said that terrorism and extremism are a common threat to both the nations and Saudi Arabia will cooperate with India on every aspect, including intelligence sharing.

Prince Mohammed’s visit to Delhi comes in the backdrop of the escalating tension between India and Pakistan following the Pulwama terror attack, carried out by Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammad, in which 40 India para military forces men lost their lives.

“Saudi Arabia shares the concerns of India on terrorism,” Prince Mohammed said.

Prime Minister Modi, while pointing out that the “world has taken note of the Pulwama attack”, stressed the need to destroy the infrastructure of terrorism and end its support system by giving strong punishment to the terrorists and their supporters.

In reply, the Saudi Crown Prince said that “terrorism and extremism are a common threat to both the nations and Saudi Arabia will cooperate with India on every aspect, including intelligence sharing. We will work with all the countries to ensure a brighter future for the coming generations.”

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