Saudi foreign aid in 30 years totals $103bn

GENEVA: ARAB NEWS
Published — Wednesday 4 September 2013

Around $103 billion in financial aid has been provided by Saudi Arabia to 95 developing countries over the past 30 years.

BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS: Deputy Foreign Minister Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah arrives in Geneva to attend the GCC-Swiss Forum. (SPA)

These figures were revealed by Deputy Foreign Minister Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah at the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Swiss Forum in Geneva on Tuesday.

“Saudi Arabia has been one of the largest donor countries and a key partner in international development. The Kingdom has spared no effort in the pursuit of achieving stability on the world’s oil markets as part of its initiatives to boost the global economy.”

Prince Abdul Aziz highlighted the Kingdom’s measures to promote dialogue among followers of different religious faiths and cultures to deepen mutual understanding and promote global peace and cooperation.

“The interfaith dialogue initiative launched by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah in 2008 resulted in the opening of the King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Center for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue in Vienna, Austria,” he said.

He affirmed the Kingdom’s role, in cooperation with the international community, to achieve peace and stability in the Middle East. He spoke about the worsening security situation in Syria because of the massacres being committed by Bashar Assad’s regime.

The minister reiterated Saudi Arabia’s support for Egypt to reinforce its security and stability. He noted that trade between the Kingdom and Switzerland amounted to nearly $4 billion and called for an increase in trading between the two countries.

Prince Abdul Aziz said the Kingdom had given $500 million in soft loans to finance energy projects in developing countries and donated $300 million for the establishment of a fund for energy, environment and climate change research.
Participants at the two-day forum included secretary-general of the GCC, Abdullatif Al-Zayani, delegates from a number of GCC organizations, businesspersons, investors and ambassadors. The forum aims to brief the Gulf and Swiss sides on investment opportunities in various sectors.

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