Two billion dollars in investments in the Russian economy at once and strategic projects designed for decades. This is the outcome of today’s visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Saudi Arabia. His negotiations with King Salman are a new starting point not only for the two countries but for the entire Middle East. The richest and one of the most influential states in the region no longer rely on Washington alone. The desire to develop ties with Moscow was manifested in literally every detail of the protocol. The reportage by Alexander Hristenko. Russian Air force One lands at King Khaled Airport in Riyadh. A bright green gangway is being driven up to the plane, a Saudi guard of honor in a hurry lining up nearby. The last time the Russian president was in Riyadh was 12 years ago. Then it was an official, now state visit – the highest category according to the rules of the protocol. The Saudi military fire a salvo right at the airport. Motorcyclists with the flags of the two states are pinned in columns. From the airport, a motorcade led by the presidential car Aurus leaves for the royal palace of Al Yamama. Saudi monarch has eight palaces. This residence is the main; according to tradition, the king lives here in autumn and winter. The cortege of Vladimir Putin is met by the Saudi cavalry – an honorary horse guard escorts the car to the entrance. Riders have the flags of the Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia in their hands. – Welcome! The ruling monarch Salman bin Abdel-Aziz Al Saud went out of his chambers to meet Vladimir Putin. The president notices an unusual curved dagger at the guard of honor – the king immediately asks to be shown closer. The Royal Palace is so huge that under its arches the leaders moved in an electric car. The conversation began along the way. There has never been such close cooperation between Moscow and Riyadh. And leaders are ready to take it to a new level. We agreed, in particular, to extend the OPEC + agreements in order to stabilize the global oil market. We consider Russian-Saudi coordination as a necessary element for ensuring security in the Middle East and North Africa. I am convinced that without your country’s participation it is hardly possible to achieve a fair and long-term settlement of one or another regional problem. We strive to work with Your Excellency always and on all issues. This can contribute to security, stability and peace, the fight against terrorism, and the strengthening of economic growth. Of course, they also discussed Syria and the military operation of Turkey in the north of the country. The main thing is that the Turks act in proportion to the situation – adviser of Russian president Yuri Ushakov. And so that their actions do not interfere with the main thing – the development of a political settlement in Syria. Before the talks, the presentation of numerous delegations occurred in the Blue Hall of the palace. The president shook hands with everyone – Saudi ministers, military, national guard commanders and members of the public. Following the traditional Arab tradition, the Russian delegation followed among which was the head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov, Minister of Energy Alexander Novak, economic development Dmitry Oreshkin. It was not easy to recognize Veronika Skvortsova, Russian Minister of Health. As a sign of respect for local customs, she wore abaya, a traditional Arab women’s dress with long sleeves. The head is covered with a scarf. East remains East. Here are very attentive to the details of the ceremonial and symbols. Traditionally, leaders exchange gifts. Vladimir Putin gave a female Kamchatka gyrfalcon to King Ben Salman. This is the largest bird of the falcon family. Its nickname is Alpha, although it is the monarch who decides how the bird will be called further. – The bird behaved very dignifiedly.
– Did he like the present?
– Highly! In response, the king gave the Russian president a painting. The eldest son, Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman is always next to the king. He holds the post of Minister of Defense and is already responsible for the affairs of the kingdom in many areas. Your Highness, with your support, the Saudi Arabia Public Fund has won $10 billion for joint projects with the Russian Direct Investment Fund in Russia. The mechanism of automatic co-investment is also functioning successfully. The parties prepared and signed ten agreements worth more than two billion dollars with the participation of the Russian Direct Investment Fund. This is an opportunity for us to gain access to one of the largest markets in the Middle East – Head of the Direct Investment Fund Kirill Dmitriev Including agriculture, it is extremely important. Because the opportunity to export to Saudi Arabia is an opportunity to export to other countries of the Gulf. The first session of Russian-Saudi Economic Council was held with the support of the king. It’s logical that the main field of cooperation between the two countries is energy. The OPEC + agreement on coordination of production volumes works extremely efficiently. Russian Minister of Energy Alexander Novak: This is a very successful agreement that allows us to achieve our goal of balancing the situation on the market. In addition, today we will also sign a charter on long-term cooperation. Riyadh has been guided by Washington for decades. But now a noticeable turn. Saudi Arabia is increasingly opening its markets to Russia. 80 years ago, oil helped Riyadh to transform from a small fortress with clay walls into a modern metropolis, and the country to become one of the leaders in the region. Also today, the kingdom is counting on high technologies to help further development of the country. And in this regard, Russia is assigned a special role. An agreement was signed with Roscosmos – with the help of Russian technologies, it is planned to launch small satellites from the territory of the kingdom. The training of the first Saudi cosmonaut is planned in the future. Agreements have been signed with Russian Railways – a Russian company can help in the construction of new railways on the Arabian Peninsula. Gazpromneft and Saudi Aramco intend to launch a pilot project on the use of artificial intelligence in geological exploration. The plans include the creation of a Russian-Saudi institute of energy cooperation on the basis of MGIMO (university level). First of all, this is assistance in the development of hydrodynamic, geological models. Importantly, Scientists at Moscow State University will also be involved in the development of this new technology -Gazpromneft’s Alexander Dyukov. Vladimir Putin was received with the highest honors in Riyadh. The king gave the president of Russia one of his residences for his stay. Vladimir Putin will fly to the capital of the United Arab Emirates tomorrow on October 15.