JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia’s economic cooperation with Uzbekistan can be bolstered through greater participation from the private sector, as the Kingdom deepens its political and business ties with the Central Asian nation, said Saudi Minister of Investment Khalid Al-Falih.
In an exclusive interview with Arab News on the sidelines of the fourth meeting of the Saudi-Uzbeki Business Council in Jeddah, Al-Falih revealed that Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev met with leaders of the business community in the Kingdom, and laid out his vision of transforming his nation.
“He (the president) asked about the ambitions of the companies to use Uzbekistan as a growth market for them, and what are the challenges they might face. For two hours, he listened and he got the feedback which is very very positive,” said Al-Falih.
He added: “As is the case anywhere, there are some challenges and regulations to access the market. He committed to removing those challenges and open opportunities.”
Al-Falih noted that 15 agreements were signed between companies of both countries during the meeting, including ACWA Power’s $2.4 billion wind project.
“I am confident that Uzbekistan will be one of the top destinations for Saudi investments in the next decade,” he added.
The minister further added that foreign direct investments coming to Saudi Arabia are rising rapidly, and the trend is likely to continue in the future.