RIYAD – French Ambassador Ludovic Pouille spoke of the deep relations between France and Saudi Arabia, describing them as rich, long-standing and trustworthy, where partnerships between the two countries have been forged at all levels from international agreement and interests.
Speaking to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), he said: “Franco-Saudi relations have developed on a permanent consensus between the two leaders, and my memory always recalls the bonds of trust that were forged between King Faisal and General de Gaulle after their meeting in June. 2, 1967, and the meeting that King Fahd had with President François Mitterrand. “
The ambassador also said that this relationship has taken new strategic steps in recent years, especially after the signing of a strategic partnership between the two countries during the visit of Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, in Paris in 2018..
He said: “The recent visit of French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian to Saudi Arabia during which he met Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman underscored these ties. He added: “We feel the energy in all our partnerships which relaunch Franco-Saudi cooperation in all areas included in the Saudi Vision 2030”.
Along with welcoming the Future Investment Initiative to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the Ambassador noted that the initiative, after five years of its launch, has become a main pillar for assessing the events of investment in the world.
He stressed that the international scale of this event has helped pave the way for him to promote his economy to a large audience of international investors with the aim of achieving Saudi Vision 2030.
He noted that French representation in the fifth edition of the initiative will be at a high level, as French business leaders have accepted the invitation to attend this important event.
The French Ambassador also hailed the launch of the Saudi Green Initiative and Crown Prince Muhammad’s Middle East Green Initiative, both of which included ambitious efforts to reduce carbon emissions, protect biodiversity and develop alternative energy resources, such as renewable energies.
He also praised Saudi Arabia for its ambitions to achieve 50% renewables in the total energy mix by 2030 and become a carbon-free country by 2060.
He also expressed France’s support for Saudi Arabia to develop other types of low-carbon energy, noting that there are several French companies working on important projects in the field of renewable energy, such as the EDF company for renewable energies.
He added that there are other French companies willing to support this transition in the energy field in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Pouille stressed that France’s strategic ambitions are in perfect harmony with those of Saudi Arabia, where the environmental element is an essential pillar to ensure the sustainable development of the economies and ambitions of the two countries.
As for the economic and trade ties between the two countries, he noted that the two countries have strong economic relations with real elements to strengthen this cooperation, noting that France retains about 3.5% of the supply market on total Saudi imports for 10 years. , where France is the seventh largest importer for Saudi Arabia.
The number of French companies in Saudi Arabia stands at around 120 for a total volume of French direct investment of 5 billion dollars.
The Ambassador also expressed his pride in cooperation in antiquities, declaring: “We are very proud to celebrate this year 20 years of Saudi-French cooperation in the field of antiques, where the first agreement signed dates back to 2001 after the signing. of an antique excavation protocol. to Hegra.
He said: “I have been impressed by the liveliness of every part of Saudi society, especially among the young people who are working hard for the future of the Kingdom, and I am very happy to speak about this joyful experience that I am having. here and the Saudis’ interest and love for France. “- SPA