Saudi, Pakistan to discuss possible support for Kingdom's $3 billion deposit

A joint statement also welcomed a decision to extend an agreement to finance exports of oil



by

Muzaffar Rizvi

Published: Sun 1 May 2022, 10:55 AM

Last updated: Sun 1 May 2022, 7:51 PM

Saudi Arabia is discussing an option to extend the term of a $3 billion deposit with the State Bank of Pakistan, according to a joint statement carried by the Saudi state news agency SPA said on Sunday.

The statement came after a visit by Pakistani Prime Minister Mohammad Shehbaz Sharif to Saudi Arabia, where he met Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Saturday during the last day of his first three-day trip after assuming his office on April 11. Shehbaz Sharif and his official delegation left Saudi Arabia on Saturday, but Minister for Finance Miftah Ismail is still staying in the kingdom to finalise the modalities of the financial package being finalised to stabilise Pakistan's economy.

"Just said goodbye to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and other colleagues at Jeddah Airport, who are on their way to Islamabad after a brief stopover in Abu Dhabi to meet Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Zayed. I remain in SA to meet Saudi officials and start technical-level talks," tweeted Mr Ismail.

Pakistan welcomed Saudi Arabia's decision to extend the agreement to finance crude exports and oil derivatives, according to the statement, which didn't offer details.

Saudi Arabia pledged $4.2 billion in assistance to Pakistan when former Prime Minister Imran Khan visited the kingdom in October. That included a deposit of $3 billion with the State Bank of Pakistan to help shore up its reserves and a facility to finance oil derivatives trade worth $1.2 billion during the year.

ALSO READ:

"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia affirmed its continuous support to Pakistan and its economy including the discussion of augmenting the $3 billion deposit with the central bank through term extension or otherwise, and exploring options to further enhance the financing of petroleum products and supporting the economic structural reforms for the benefit of Pakistan and its people," according to the joint statement.

"The two sides agreed to deepen the investment cooperation between the two countries, stimulate partnerships and enable investment integration opportunities between the private sector of the two countries. They also agreed to join efforts to develop the investment environment in the two countries and support a number of investment sectors of common interest," it added.


More news from Asia