Saudi Arabia, Brunei economic committee to boost trade
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN
BRUNEI and Saudi Arabia will establish a joint economic committee this October, in a bid to boost trade and economic relations between the two countries.
Outgoing Saudi Ambassador, Mohammed Jameel Abdul Jaleel Hashim, told The Brunei Times that the committee will explore investment opportunities in both countries, with an eye on the energy industry.
“I expect some big economic projects to come out of this committee which will benefit the two countries,” he said.
The ambassador added that Saudi Arabia can lend its expertise to help Brunei identify and develop new oil fields and existing energy resources.
“The kingdom of Saudi Arabia is now a big industrial country, everything can be manufactured here.
“So this joint economic committee will look at examining all the means of cooperation.”
The joint committee is scheduled to meet every six months - headed by Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Economic Planning and Brunei’s Second Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade - with the first meeting set to take place in Riyadh this October.
Current trade volume between the two states is negligible, due to the distance and cost of transporting goods, said the envoy. Although some halal food products, such as juice, milk and cheese, are imported from Saudi Arabia.
Mohammed Jameel said it is important for Brunei to engage with the Middle East and urged the Sultanate to play a greater role in the Organisation of the Islamic Conference (OIC).
“Brunei is a producer of oil and gas and the Middle East is the biggest producer of oil and gas, therefore cooperation in this field is necessary.”
The Brunei Times