Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Hiroshige Seko revealed that Tokyo took firm procedures in a quick and effective manner to boost cooperation with Riyadh in fields of energy, health care, retail, entertainment, intellectual property and others. He affirmed that Saudi Arabia remains the primary supplier of oil.
“The joint group of Saudi-Japan Vision 2030 (SJV 2030) established a team that would be directed and guided by high-rank experts and officials from both sides. Until now, we have determined 46 potential opportunities with the government’s participation and 38 MoUs between the business sectors in both countries,” said Seko.
He will participate in the Saudi Arabia-Japan Business Forum on Sunday in Riyadh.
“How do you view trade and investment horizons between Riyadh and Tokyo,” asked Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper. Seko responded as follows: “Saudi Arabia and Japan worked jointly on expanding economic cooperation between them since 1975 when the agreement on technical and economic cooperation was signed between the kingdom and Japan.”
The newspaper asked about the Japanese direct investment in Saudi Arabia, Seko said that the main focus of Japanese direct investment was on the Saudi petrochemicals sector mainly Petro Rabigh project of joint investments worth USD16 billion.
He added that there have been several Japanese investments in the transformational industries sector such as trucks, electricity generating turbines and pipelines.
“To what extent did the mutual visits contribute in setting up foundation for a sustainable cooperation between the two countries,” Asharq Al-Awsat asked.
“The last visits of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz to Japan in 2017 as well as the visits of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in 2016 represented great opportunities for both countries not only to reaffirm bilateral cooperation in various fields but also to push towards more cooperation to achieve the kingdom’s goals,” said Seko.
Seko noted that Japan is carrying out several national economic plans known as Abenomics, and “we are more than delighted to transform and exchange expertise and knowledge with the kingdom.”