Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif has said that it is high time for Saudi Arabia and Pakistan to build a road map to enhance bilateral trade between the two countries.
“Now is the time for us to sit down to build a road map through which not only we can enhance our investment but also trade,” the premier said while addressing the Saudi businessmen and investors in Islamabad on Monday.
PM Shehbaz said Saudi investments in various fields of Pakistan are fully protected under the law of land which he said allowed the investors to repatriate their profits and also provided jobs to the locals.
“There are many potential areas of investment for Saudi Arabia like agriculture and agriculture-based industry, natural resources and others,” he said while asking the Saudi businessmen to invest in Pakistan to get a good return on their investments.
The premier said amid rising global inflation, Pakistan offered cheaper labour comparatively which he said could help the Saudi and Pakistani investors to joint produce high-quality products to export them to different parts of the world.
“We are here to serve you to remove red-tapism and any kind of bureaucratic hurdles.”
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He also thanked the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman for inviting him and his delegation to the kingdom, saying Riyad-Islamabad ties have no parallel.
“The crown prince has transformed Saudi Arabia… it has become the most modern country not only in the Muslim world but around the globe.”
The premier said Saudi Arabia has always supported Pakistan through thick and thin.
“We have always received unconditional material support, diplomatic support and help of all kinds from Saudi leadership since the inception of Pakistan..”
In October last year, Saudi Arabia announced to provide Pakistan $3 billion as cash deposit with the State Bank to address its balance-of-payments crisis. The kingdom had also pledged a one-year deferred payment facility for the import of oil, worth up to another $1.2 billion.
The cash deposit under Riyadh’s bailout package to boost Islamabad’s foreign exchange reserves, further augmenting the economic ties between the two countries, was received in December 2021.