April 26, 2018

Saudi Arabia to allocate Russian Federation $1 bln for joint energy projects

06 October 2017, 12:25 | Simon Arnold

Vladimir Putin right and Saudi King Salman listen to national anthems during their meeting in the Kremlin

Vladimir Putin right and Saudi King Salman listen to national anthems during their meeting in the Kremlin

The agreements which were reached between Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia have helped oil markets to stabilise, Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih told an investment forum on Thursday.

King Salman of Saudi Arabia arrived in Moscow, Russia, yesterday for a state visit during which he will discuss the topic of the investment fund and finalising what deals can be enacted in the near future to strengthen relations between the two countries. The agreement remains in force until the end of March 2018.

Saudi Arabia also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Russian Federation to further localize military industries.

Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) in cooperation with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) is considering joint work on 25 investment projects in various areas, according to Russian Energy Minister Aleksandr Novak.

"King Salman does not do courtesy calls so it can be reasonably assumed that his first official visit to the Russian capital is a serious event", wrote Chris Weafer, a senior partner at Macro-Advisory, a consultancy.

As part of the four-day trip, the king is due to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday for talks in the Kremlin expected to focus on the global oil market and the conflict in Syria. Historically, Saudi Arabia and the former USSR were at odds on nearly every regional conflict, especially during the height of the Cold War.

Riyadh's recent overtures toward Moscow underline a new diplomatic approach by Saudi Arabia toward regional and worldwide issues, one that is rooted in pragmatism and realism. Furthermore, the two countries have signed a number of lucrative deals paving the way for the further development of the Russo-Saudi relationship.

The rivalry between two of the world's largest oil producers goes back to the Cold War when the Saudis helped arm Afghan rebels fighting against the Soviet invasion.

It shows the Saudis' interest in keeping Russian Federation signed up to a global deal to limit oil production and push up the price of their valuable crude exports. New York, London and Hong Kong are the main contenders.

"The stakes are as high for Moscow as for Riyadh". We are looking at opportunities for working together with the different companies.

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