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Lavrov to discuss economy, energy, Syria, Yemen with Saudi top diplomat

August 29, 2018, 6:55 UTC+3 MOSCOW

There will also be an exchange of views on the current situation in the Middle East and North Africa between the ministers

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MOSCOW, August 29. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will meet his Saudi counterpart Adel al-Jubeir in Moscow later on Wednesday to discuss a whole range of issues related to bilateral cooperation, including a top-level dialogue between the countries, economy and energy, as well as international problems, particularly the situation in Syria and Yemen.

Moscow and Riyadh coordinate positions on regional issues on a regular basis, including their joint efforts on the hydrocarbons market, as well as regarding issues of price determination.

The Russian side considers the meeting between the two ministers "as part of a regular and trust-based political dialogue with the Saudi partners on a wide range of issues of mutual interest."

Top-level, oil and investments

Heads of foreign ministries will discuss the implementation of agreements made during Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud’s official visit to Russia and his talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in October 2017. Russian Special Presidential Envoy for the Middle East and Africa, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov said on August 24, that Vladimir Putin’s return visit to Saudi Arabia is under consideration, while its dates depend on the president’s schedule.

Foreign ministers will particularly focus on bilateral trade, which has been on the rise recently. According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, "trade almost doubled to $915.2 bln in 2017 compared to 2016, while in first four months of this year the trade turnover soared 76.4% to $293.2mln."

The Russian-Saudi intergovernmental commission on trade, economic, scientific and technical cooperation, as well as related specialized working groups, have been playing an important coordinating role, according to the Russian side. "The cooperation between the Russian Direct Investment Fund and the Saudi Public Investment Fund has contributed much to the cooperation (between the countries)," Russia’s Foreign Ministry said, also emphasizing "the important stabilizing effect of a close Russia-Saudi coordination concerning the situation on the global oil market in relation to multi-sided OPEC+ agreements."

Global issues

There will also be an exchange of views on the current situation in the Middle East and North Africa between the ministers, while "the focus will be on the need to resolve issues facing this strategically important region through political and diplomatic means, including a dialogue based on mutual respect, taking into consideration the interests and concerns of all the parties involved."

The meeting’s agenda includes the situations in Syria, Yemen, Libya and the Persian Gulf area, as well as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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