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Tue 18 Apr 2017 12:28 PM

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Saudi Arabia, Russia to launch joint projects worth $3bn this year

Most promising areas of cooperation include energy, geological exploration, mining, petrochemicals and investment cooperation

Saudi Arabia, Russia to launch joint projects worth $3bn this year
Russian Federation Council chairperson Valentina Matvienko pictured with King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of Saudi Arabia. Image: Russian Federation Council Press Office/TASS

Russia and Saudi Arabia will launch joint projects worth $3bn by the end of the year, according to the speaker of Russia’s Federation Council Valentina Matviyenko.

Russian news agency TASS reported that Matviyenko made the comments during a meeting with members of the Russian-Saudi Business Council on Monday.

“Although Saudi Arabia ranks second among the Arab states in terms of trade with Russia, the volume of mutual trade turnover in the past year has significantly decreased," said Matviyenko during the meeting.

"This does not correspond to the potential that our countries have, we are interested in expanding economic ties," the speaker added.

Matviyenko said the proposed areas of cooperation include energy, geological exploration, mining, petrochemicals, tanker construction, investment cooperation, and the training of personnel.

She also underlined the opportunities for business development and investment offered to its partners, referring to existing partnership between the Russian Direct Investment Fund and the Sovereign Fund of Saudi Arabia.

"The parliament adopted the laws improving the investment and business climate," she said.

"Thanks to them, projects totaling about $600 million have been implemented and projects worth $3 billion should be launched by the end of this year," she said.

The Federation Council is upper chamber of the Russian parliament.

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