Saudi and Spain to strengthen bilateral economic cooperation

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Top officials during the Saudi-Spanish Joint Committee meeting.

The third Saudi-Spanish Joint Committee (SSJC) concluded in Madrid with a renewed emphasis on strengthening bilateral economic cooperation and enhancing knowledge transfers between both nations.

The Saudi delegation’s visit to Spain included the third meeting of the SSJC, the Saudi-Spanish Business Forum, and the Saudi-Spanish Business Council, as well as a range of bilateral meetings, which saw the participation of more than 50 entities from Saudi’s public and private sectors.

Throughout the three-day Saudi-Spanish Joint Committee, representatives from both countries explored ways to deepen economic collaboration across vital industries such as energy, water, technology, tourism, education, infrastructure, real estate, aviation, agriculture, and the environment, among others, as Saudi Arabia looks to accelerate its transformation into a global industrial powerhouse and world-class business and logistics hub.

Speaking at the end of the SSJC, Faisal Bin Fadhil Alibrahim, Minister of Economy and Planning for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, said: “The third Saudi-Spanish Joint Committee has been a true success, enhancing and promoting collaboration between our nations and opening the door to a new phase of strategic cooperation across vital industries in both countries.

“It has served as a highly productive platform to highlight the continuous progress being made under Saudi Vision 2030, and to also demonstrate the range of opportunities open to Spanish companies to invest in the Kingdom and contribute to our remarkable journey of transformation and innovation.”

Alibrahim added: “As we continue to diversify our evolving economy, enhancing knowledge and technology transfers with key international partners like Spain will be key to developing the Kingdom’s industrial capabilities, and building a world-class, global business and logistics hub in the Middle East at the intersection of the world.”

At the third SSJC in Madrid, Alibrahim joined Maria Reyes Maroto, Spain’s Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism to outline ways to strengthen the long-standing bilateral relationship between the Kingdom and Spain.

In his speech to the Saudi-Spanish Business Forum, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Economy and Planning highlighted the importance of strategic international economic partnerships in finding common ground and designing joint solutions to challenges facing impacting growth and prosperity today. During the high-level Saudi delegation’s visit to Madrid between Oct.19-22, Alibrahim met Gonzalo Garcia Andres, Spain’s Secretary of State for the Economy, to explore ways to deepen international collaboration and spur economic growth, and Antonio Garamendi, President of the Spanish Confederation of Business Organisations, to discuss future opportunities between the two countries. Meanwhile, on the topic of driving climate progress and sustainable economic development between Saudi and Spain, Alibrahim met Teresa Ribera, Third Vice-President of Spain and Minister of Environmental Transformation and Demographic Challenge.

Alibrahim also met Xiana Margarida Méndez Bértolo, Secretary of State for Trade and President of Invest in Spain (ICEX) to discuss opportunities where the two countries can improve supply chain resilience to support robust bilateral trade.

Spanish entrepreneur Rebeca Minguela, Founder and CEO of Clarity AI, later met with Alibrahim, where they exchanged knowledge of the two countries’ private sector performance in recent years and international best practices for allocating global capital to promote social impact initiatives to foster an innovation-driven entrepreneurial ecosystem.

On two site visits, firstly to Indra’s state-of-the-art factory, and then to Airbus’ advanced defense and space production facility in Madrid, Alibrahim was accompanied by Xiana Margarida Méndez Bértolo, Secretary of State for Trade, and Azzam Algain, Ambassador of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques to Spain, key government officials and a number of senior executives from both Indra and Airbus.

The Kingdom’s Minister of Economy and Planning also visited the IE University campus with its President, Dr Santiago Iñiguez, where they discussed enhancing academic exchanges between the two countries. That was followed by a meeting between Alibrahim and several Saudi students based in Madrid, where he outlined the range of professional development pathways and opportunities offered by the Kingdom to its students that enable them to contribute to building a prosperous future for Saudi Arabia.

The Kingdom’s delegation, led by the Minister of Economy and Planning and includes representatives from the Ministry of Energy, Ministry of Sport, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Investment, Ministry of Tourism, Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Transport and Logistic Services, Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture, The Public Investment Fund (PIF), Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority, General Authority for Foreign Trade, Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu, Saudi Export Development Authority, National Industrial Development, and Logistics programme.

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