Cash Strapped Pakistan To Host Saudi Crown Prince

Saudi Arabia Is No Longer Saudi Arabia

Pakistan: Saudi crown prince to visit Islamabad this week

At a press conference along with Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry, Adviser to Prime Minister on Commerce and Investment Razak Dawood and Board of Investment (BoI) Chairman Haroon Sharif, Qureshi made clear that there were no strings attached to the Saudi investment in Pakistan.

Pakistan said Wednesday that Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman will arrive in Islamabad later this week on an official visit that is expected to include the signing of agreements for billions of dollars of investment in the South Asian country.

According to a Foreign Office announcement, Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman will undertake a two-day visit to Pakistan on February 16 and 17.

The foreign minister said such a huge Saudi delegation would never have visited Pakistan before. "I say it loud and clear that there is no condition attached with Saudi investment", he said while replying to a question.

The visit comes just weeks after Pakistan rolled out the red carpet for Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al-Nahyan, shortly after the emirate pledged to provide $3 billion to support Pakistan's battered economy.

He said a Pak-Saudi Coordination Council would be set up following the visit, where Prime Minister Imran Khan would personally lead the monitoring of the implementation of MoUs.

He also said that Pakistan would raise the matter of Pakistani nationals jailed in Saudi Arabia, however, this would not include countrymen involved in heinous crimes.

Pakistan has traditionally maintained strong political, cultural, economic and defense ties with Saudi Arabia. That project would require about $8 billion in investments, he added.

Saudi Arabia is reportedly preparing to sign a record investment package with Pakistan, aiming to provide welcome relief for its cash-strapped Muslim ally.

The information minister said this was the first time since the tenure of former premier Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto that Pakistan was playing such a key role in the region.

It will also send a strong message to other worldwide investors to come to Pakistan, said Haroon Sharif, who chairs Pakistan's Board of Investment, (BoI) which promotes and facilitates investors. The Saudi ministers accompanying the crown prince will meet their counterparts to discuss bilateral cooperation in their respective fields.

Sources said seven BMWs 7 Series, one land cruiser, and eight containers carrying essential articles for the crown prince's personal use have been brought to Pakistan and shifted to the Prime Minister House where the visiting dignitary will stay during the visit.

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