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EDITOR IN CHIEF- ABDULLAH BIN SALIM AL SHUEILI

HM’s visit to deepen cooperation

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The relations between the Sultanate of Oman and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have touched a new peak forged by appreciation and respect of the leadership and people of these two brotherly countries.


With the objective of consolidating the bonds of fraternal ties and making the best use of cooperation in various aspects, the current discussions between His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik and the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz al Saud will see greater dimensions with more joint actions.


His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik’s trip to Saudi Arabia is his first foreign visit to the Kingdom after taking office in January 2020 and the second meeting with King Salman when he arrived in Muscat to offer his condolences on the death of late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said.


While the relation is cemented by cooperation and mutual respect between the two leaderships over a period of half a century, peoples of the two countries share common history, authentic Arab customs and traditions and deep-rooted fraternity.


The two countries have made tangible progress in political, economic, social, cultural and security spheres. It is a renewed evidence that these relations are continuous, open and are expected to see further comprehensive growth.


When it comes to the region, they work closely under the aegis of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), with a common goal to achieve coordination and integration among member states in various fields.


Ever since he ascended to the throne, His Majesty the Sultan emphasised his determination to work in close coordination with his brethren, GCC states, for the realisation of achievements that respond to the aspirations of the people in the region.


His Majesty pledged to continue the approach that Oman has followed in its foreign policy, and its commitment not to interfere in the affairs of other countries, and to advance the process of joint action among the GCC member states.


The Sultanate always supported the Saudi Government vis-à-vis on a variety of issues. The Sultanate welcomed the initiative announced by its neighbour in March 2020 to reach a political settlement of the Yemeni crisis through dialogue with different parties and in cooperation with the UN efforts aimed at realising the desired political settlement in Yemen.


His Majesty’s visit to the Kingdom, as experts point out, as a dear guest of his brother the Saudi King confirms to the bonds of brotherhood on which Omani-Saudi relations are established.


“The visit reflects wisdom, foresight and extrapolation for the future, as it is a testament to the strength and depth of the solid and rooted relations between the two countries”, commented Dr Nayef bin Falah al Majraf, Secretary-General of the GCC.


The keenness on exchanging points of view about matters of common concern is reflected in high-level meetings between the leaders and top officials of the two countries.


Omani and Saudi visions are identical in many ways. Both the countries have the necessary ingredients and capabilities that qualify them to establish real economic integration relations, based on Oman’s Vision 2040 and the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.


Both the programmes comprise huge opportunities and projects that can be utilised to make them strong partners in the region, reflecting positively on the economic status of the two countries in terms of joint investments and job opportunities.


Both countries share common interest in the field of environment, which is considered one of the most significant international issues raised in the agendas of UN organisations.


The Green Middle East initiative announced by Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman represents a promising aspect for cooperation in combating climate change.


Another milestone achievement is the land port project linking the Sultanate and the Kingdom over a distance of more than 680 km. After its inauguration, it will contribute to accelerating and increasing the volume of trade and investment exchange between the two countries.


According to Sayyid Badr bin Hamad al Busaidy, Oman’s Foreign Minister, the meeting is likely to witness the launch of a coordination council between the two neighbouring countries.


“The meeting is expected to witness the launch of Omani-Saudi Coordination Council that will act as the framework for several agreements between Muscat and Riyadh”, he said in an interview to Asharq Al Awsat.


The minister said that the council will lead the way for promising logistic projects between the two countries.


The meeting will pave the way for the next phase in cooperation, and that it will likely witness the signing of several agreements and memoranda of understanding in several fields including business, investment, ICT, posts, transport, standardisation, media, youths, sports and culture.


These areas constitute significant pillars in Oman Vision 2040 and Saudi Vision 2030. They will definitely bring a wide range of benefits to the peoples of the two countries.


The talks are also expected to contribute to resolving pending issues and shaping joint visions and consensus on current regional issues.


They will draw on the great political expertise of the two countries and their diplomatic traditions founded on solid grounds of sound foreign policy.


Yet successive changes in the region are pushing the leaderships of the two neighbouring countries for more cooperation


in establishing permanent security and stability to ensure that their positive repercussions are reflected on development programmes in service of their nations.


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