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Saudi Arabia voices political, economic support for Georgia

Thursday, March 24
King Salman of Saudi Arabia has instructed his cabinet to intensify relations with Georgia.

This statement of intent came after the Saudi King met Georgia’s Parliament Speaker David Usupashvili in Saudi Arabia on March 22..

After the meeting, Usupashvili said there were "big plans” that could allow Georgia and Saudi Arabia to deepen cooperation, as Saudi Arabia had "a very serious drinking water problem”, something which Georgia is rich in.

Usupashvili said he had a "very productive meeting” with King Salman, while the Saudi Arabian side expressed interest in developing closer relations with Georgia.

"We were pleased to note at the meetings that such a strong and influential country as Saudi Arabia, having a vote in solution of world issues, is interested in developing close relations with Georgia,” Usupashvili said as he summed up his Saudi Arabia visit.

"The instructions of Kind Salman to members of his cabinet to further enhance relations with Georgia were very important.”

Saudi Arabian officials confirmed the country supported Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and underlined that Saudi Arabia would continue supporting an important document for Georgia, namely the United Nations General Assembly Resolution on "The Status of the IDPs and Refugees from Abkhazia, Georgia and Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia, Georgia”.

Alongside the country’s political support, King Salman said he was also interested in the economic and touristic potential of Georgia.

"King Salman issued instructions to the Ministers to work harder with business circles to present Georgia as a friend country. Their will and attitude is very important in the fact they support the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia, as well as contribute to the country’s economic development,” Georgia’s Parliament Speaker said.

"They are interested in Georgia as a country that hosts vast numbers of its tourists,” he added.

The number of tourists from Saudi Arabia to Georgia increased ten-fold during the last five years.

"But tourism was not the only topic of our conversations,” Usupashvili said.

"We spoke about the drinking water problem in Saudi Arabia, when Georgian companies and Georgian businessmen can think about big plans to work closely with Arabian businessmen in this regard.

"So, in political, economic and cultural terms, our visit saw our relations progress substantially.” (