JEDDAH, May 31, (KUNA): His Highness the Crown Prince Sheikh Meshaal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al- Sabah’s visit to Saudi Arabia, due on Tuesday, is “historic” and refl ective of the strong brotherly ties, said Kuwaiti Ambassador to Saudi Arabia on Monday. Speaking to KUNA, Sheikh Ali Khaled Al-Sabah affirmed that the visit would contribute to further bolster relations. This is the first official visit by His Highness Sheikh Meshaal in his capacity as Crown Prince and it came at an invitation by Saudi Crown Prince Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister of Defense Mohammad bin Salman.
The Ambassador added His Highness Sheikh Meshaal’s choice of Saudi Arabia as the first country to visit in his current capacity reflected the strength of Kuwaiti-Saudi ties. He noted that the visit would display the deeply rooted relations linking the leaderships of both countries, saying that such fact will be beneficial for the people of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Kuwait and Saudi Arabia also share social and traditional customs. Through numerous challenges and mutual struggles, the Kuwaiti and Saudi people managed to come through due to the strong collaboration, which highlighted ties. The relations were further solidified in 2018, when the then Kuwaiti Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Sabah Khaled Al-Hamad Al-Sabah and the then Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubair signed an agreement to establish the joint Kuwaiti-Saudi coordination council, which was tasked to overview all aspects of cooperation amongst the two countries.
The two countries signed, on December 24, 2019, an agreement affiliated with an accord for dividing the neutral zone and another one on partitioning the adjacent submerged zone. The State of Kuwait and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are tied with distinguished deep-rooted relations, especially in the economic field. The upcoming visit of His Highness the Crown Prince to Saudi Arabia comes to boost the bilateral ties to wider domains and levels of cooperation, which would positively refl ect on the bilateral relations and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries’ common interests.
Kuwaiti exports to Saudi Arabia climbed up during the crisis of the novel Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, by 11.3 percent, and Saudi ranked the first as a commercial partner of the Kuwaiti exports during the last quarter of 2020, at a time of international economies’ closure. The local exports to Saudi climbed up by 11.3 percent to reach KD 59 million- (around USD 194.7), compared to the same period of 2019 of the total Kuwaiti non-oil exports at the value of KD 358.8 -(around USD 1.1 billion) according to the Kuwait’s Central Statistical Bureau. Kuwait’s total exports to Saudi reached in 2020 KD 205 million -(around USD 676.5) compared to KD 19 -(around USD 650 million)- during 2019, whereas Saudi import to Kuwait reached KD 504.5 million- (around USD 1.6 billion) compared to KD 629.6 million in 2019.
Cooperation between the two nations is not only restricted to governmental bodies, but also between the private sectors, as this type of cooperation was set signing a memorandum of understanding in 2005. It was signed between the Council for Saudi Chambers of Commerce and Industry and the Kuwait Chamber Of Commerce And Industry, aiming at boosting both economies and increasing the business exchange between Kuwait and Saudi. In the oil sector, the bilateral relations witnessed a new dimension when Saudi Minister of Energy Prince Abdulaziz Bin Salman and Kuwait’s Minister of Oil, Minister of Electricity and Water Dr. Khaled Al-Fadhel in December 25 of the year 2019 allowed resuming the oil production operations in Al-Khafji joint area. They signed an agreement affiliated to the two agreements of dividing the divided zone and the submerged area adjacent to the divided zone between the two countries. The agreement came upon the instructions of the two wise political leaderships to end this file in order to come out with a stable, sustainable future vision. The Kuwaiti-Saudi coordination played a great role in the stability of the international oil prices and markets through the joint work in the so-called (OPEC+).