RIYADH, Saudi Arabia – Under the patronage of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman Bin Abdulaziz, the 4th Saudi-US Business Opportunities Forum opened in Riyadh on 22 March with the participation of Saudi government ministers, other high ranking government officials, and leading businesspeople from both nations.
The forum aims to carry the two nations’ longtime strategic partnership well into the 21st century by deepening mutual relations, building new alliances and partnerships, and opening up new, as-yet-unexplored areas for cooperation, all of which are set to reinforce the Saudi economy’s ongoing transformation and contribute to its diversification and prosperity.
Turki AlToaimi, Advisor and Director General of Marketing and Communication at the Ministry and Chief Director of the forum’s organizing committee, stated that the importance of the event reflects the strength of the ties that bind the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United States, one of the world’s strongest alliances. It also highlights everything that is important for the prosperity of the Kingdom, the wellbeing of Saudis, and the sustained development of the national economy.
AlToaimi added that the selection of Riyadh this time round, after all previous forums were held in US cities, goes to show just how important the Saudi market is to investors and the business communities of both countries. It also is an unequivocal indicator of just how favorable this partnership is politically and economically, given that the two countries’ relationship built on mutual interests.
This year the forum comes at a time when the Kingdom is in the process of launching a number of initiatives that aim to diversify its economy. It goes one step further towards reaffirming the new objectives and trends the Kingdom has set and continues to set for itself for a better future, out of the Saudi state’s conviction that today’s private sector has become indispensable in effecting a transformation of the Saudi economy, which would help to create more jobs and ensure the local, regional, and international competitiveness of national products, in terms of both quality and pricing.
As the two nations strive for mutual relations based on US-bound Saudi oil exports and Saudi-bound, US-produced consumables, food, and arms, the Saudi-US partnership will continue to grow, prosper, and stay abreast with ever-shifting market trends. The two nations are fully committed to taking their relationship to the next level by shifting its basis towards creating more jobs in both countries, and greater cooperation in various economic and business fields, especially those that concern technological cooperation, the training of manpower, and reciprocal investments, given the unrivaled competitiveness of the US corporate community in various fields of the new economy, such as biotechnology, health care services and their management, information technology, transportation, conventional and alternative energy, and automotive manufacturing.
“The holding of the forum comes as part of a shared quest to strengthen ties and enhance the exchange of trade, knowledge and cultures between the two nations,” said AlToaimi. “The two sides know full well that a successful partnership should not be based solely on business and trade, but must be taken beyond mere economics towards building solid ties between the two friendly nations, and should encompass education, tourism, professional exchange, arts, food, and all facets of human interaction. Hence, the forum is scheduled to witness signings of a multitude of new mutual agreements that will usher in a new era for the two countries’ relations, which, in turn, will contribute to bolstering mutual empathy and compassion between the two nations and transcend the level of respect and appreciation they have for each other’s cultures and heritages, thus boosting their capability to meet all current and future challenges for a brighter future for all.”
Observers say that the current growth and diversification of the Saudi economy can be a boon for both the Saudi and US business communities, thanks to a possible windfall of important opportunities for business, trade, and innovation. As a continuation of the two countries’ nine-decade partnership, their officials look forward today towards many more years of realized aspirations of both peoples for a better, stronger strategic partnership through the 21st century.