Saudi Arabia, UAE Sign 4 MoUs, 7 Strategic Initiatives
Saudi Arabia and the UAE are the two largest Arab economies and among the top 10 international exporting countries with total exports of goods and services approaching $750 billion in 2018.
Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Saudi Crown Prince Prince Mohammed bin Salman presided the second meeting of the Saudi-Emirati Coordination Council in Abu Dhabi.
The meeting comes as part of the efforts by the two countries to activate all aspects of cooperation that leads to full integration in economy, knowledge and human development, and military.
Both countries aim for their joint economy to be among the top ten economies in the world, as their overseas investments exceed $250 billion in various economic sectors and the investment funds ranked first in the world.
Riyadh and Abu Dhabi aim to increase their investments to rank among the top ten countries investing globally, knowing that both financial markets exceed $720 billion.
The Council also reviewed the latest updates on the seven key initiatives, including joint tourist visa, the flow of traffic at entry ports, joint strategy for food security, cybersecurity, cryptocurrency pilot, mega refinery, and the Saudi-Emirati Youth Council.
Meanwhile, the two sides also exchanged four new Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) in the fields of health, culture, space, and food security.
The MoUs aim to intensify and integrate efforts, as well as find innovative solutions to achieve optimal utilization of the available resources and accomplish the development objectives of both countries.
In addition, the two countries together accounted for two-thirds of Arab exports of non-oil goods in 2018 and ranked sixth in the world in terms of overall merchandise exports.
UAE is one of Saudi Arabia’s most important trading partners in the Arab region in general and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in particular, with non-oil exchange between the two countries reaching $29.2 billion in 2018, a surge of 35 percent over 2017.
UAE’s investments in Saudi Arabia amount to more than $9.2 billion, reflecting the activity of about 122 investment projects for 65 companies and investment groups.
Saudi direct investments in the UAE exceeded $4.3 billion, with 4004 Saudi trademarks registered in the UAE, 73 commercial agencies, and 26 companies registered in the country.
Regarding tourism, the Saudi market came in second among the most important tourist markets of the UAE in 2018, and about 740 thousand Emirati tourists spent about $773 million in Saudi Arabia.
The two countries are currently coordinating to issue a joint visa to enable UAE visitors to visit Saudi Arabia and vice versa. The national carriers of both countries operate about 651 flights a week.