The Strategic Partnership Council was established in March 2018 by H.R.H Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, and Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Teresa May MP to affirm and reinforce the relations between the two countries and commit to a deeper and more strategic partnership to enhance mutual interests.
On 7 July 2019, under the auspices of the UK-KSA Strategic Partnership Council, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP and Minister of Commerce and Investment, H.E. Dr Majid Al Qasabi, held the first meeting of Economic and Society Pillar of the Strategic Partnership Council in Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Rt Hon Phillip Hammond was honoured with a meeting with the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and subsequently met with H.R.H. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defence, H.H. Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Farhan Al Saud, Minister of Culture, H.E. Dr Majed bin Abdullah Al Qasabi, Minister of Commerce and Investment, H.E. Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Jaadan, Minister of Finance and other Excellencies. They exchanged constructive and fruitful discussions and views on developing bilateral relations and strengthening cooperation between the two countries in the areas of co-operation under the Strategic Partnership in addition to regional and international issues of common interest.
Strategic Partnership and for Vision 2030
1. The United Kingdom reaffirmed its continued commitment to support the delivery of Vision 2030, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s programme for economic diversity and social reform. The United Kingdom acknowledges the significant economic progress achieved since the establishment of Vision 2030 in 2016. Under the Strategic Partnership, both countries worked together to support the development of the skills and potential of the citizens of the Kingdom, and is acknowledged by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as a key strategic partner in Vision 2030. Both countries reaffirm their joint commitment to building and developing trade and investment, delivering mutual prosperity for the citizens of both Kingdoms.
2. The United Kingdom’s appointment of Mr Ken Costa as the Prime Minister and Foreign Secretary’s Special Representative on Vision 2030 and Sir Anthony Seldon as UK Education Envoy for Vision 2030 reinforce the importance that the United Kingdom places on developing the bilateral linkages to support people-people contacts and delivering opportunities for economic and social closer co-operation.
3. The United Kingdom and Saudi Arabia remain committed to a long-term partnership to support delivery of Vision 2030 in the areas identified under the UK-KSA Strategic Partnership and which include evaluating mutual investment opportunities including Public Investment Fund investment in the UK, bilateral trade and investment to support Vision 2030 delivery.
4. UK-KSA bilateral trade is currently in excess of USD 5bn per annum. Ways of further enhancing co-operation were explored, including encouraging mutual exports, and attracting direct inward investments. Saudi priority sectors for investment were also discussed and further work will identify additional scope for new strategic investment partnerships. The two sides also discussed the investment licenses granted to UK companies, with a potential capital investment of more than $10bn.
5. The work of the Private Sector Groups, established in March 2018 with the key aim of facilitating B2B relationships supporting Vision 2030 delivery, was discussed. The groups will meet in London and Riyadh later this year to continue progress. Both sides expressed their gratitude to the UK and Saudi business leaders who Co-Chair the groups.
6. The Public Investment Fund (PIF) invested in infrastructure, technology and logistics directly and indirectly and will continue to engage with the Department of International Trade (DIT) to identify strategic investment partners and key investment opportunities. Further engagement by the PIF in the UK will help progress this area of opportunity.
7. The United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia celebrate the establishment of the UK-KSA Education dialogue and acknowledge the progress delivered to date including the identification of short-term priorities and which the United Kingdom is well placed to support with private sector expertise. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia also pays tribute to the expertise and experience of the United Kingdom in the education sector, and is grateful for the work of the UK Special Representative, Sir Anthony Sheldon.
8. Since the establishment of the Strategic Partnership, a number of MoUs have been signed with leading UK healthcare organizations to support the delivery of the Vision 2030 objectives. The creation of the Saudi Arabian - UK Joint Executive Committee on Health will ensure closer, further cooperation. Saudi Arabia’s hosting of the 4th Patient Safety Ministerial Summit in March of 2019, and the participation of the Saudi Arabian delegation at the Care & Innovation Expo and Global Digital Health Partnership, in addition to the bilateral visits by senior healthcare providers from both countries further affirms the strength of the collaboration between the two Kingdoms.
9. The inaugural Energy and Industry dialogue was held in Riyadh in February 2018, during which both sides discussed areas of collaboration, including on renewable energy, regulation, CCUS and the future of mobility. The UK and Saudi Arabia affirm their commitment to collaborating on areas of mutual interest and which align with their respective Industrial Strategies, facilitating growth, employment and the development of skills.
10. The United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia recognise and are keen to build on the excellent people to people linkages through the development of cultural and sporting opportunities. Agreements between the United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, including the Ministry of Culture and General Entertainment Authority with UK entertainment institutions will further develop co-operation in the field of culture and creative development.
11. The United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia look forward to the next meeting of the Economic and Society Pillar in the United Kingdom to review progress, identify further engagement and opportunities which will continue enhance the Strategic Partnership, building closer people-people ties and deliver mutual prosperity benefit for both countries and our people.
12. In concluding of the meeting, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Rt Hon. Philip Hammond MP thanked the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, His Royal Highness the Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Defence and H.E. Dr Majed bin Abdullah Al Qasabi, Minister of Commerce and Investment for the warm hospitality extended to him and his accompanying delegation. While H.E Dr. Majed Al Qasabi extended his appreciation to both sides for their efforts, and he is looking forward to holding the second meeting in the UK.
Agreed in the city of Jeddah on 4/11/1440 AH in accordance to 7/7/2019.