Riyadh – More than 200 ministers and experts from Saudi Arabia and the UAE met in Riyadh on Thursday at a retreat aimed at strengthening the countries’ ties on the economic, political and security levels.
The “Joint Determination Retreat” was held under the directives of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz and UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
This year’s retreat was the second of its kind, as the first was held in February on Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi.
The retreat was mainly aimed at boosting efforts to strengthen cooperation within the Gulf Cooperation Council, as well as discussing issues of common interest and placing a general structure and work plans for the UAE-Saudi Coordination Council.
The retreat kicked off with a welcome speech Mohammad Bin Abdullah Al Gergawi, UAE minister of cabinet affairs and the future, and Engineer Adel al-Fakeih, Saudi minister of Economy and Planning.
The two officials underlined the importance of the meeting in supporting cooperation between the two countries, as well as bolstering efforts to strengthen the Gulf Cooperation Council.
Al Gergawi said ties between the UAE and Saudi Arabia were at their strongest.
“The UAE and Saudi Arabia have well-known stances in regional cooperation, which resulted in the UAE-Saudi Coordination Council where the determination retreat originated from,” he said.
Topics of discussion included the development of airports and seaports, joint investment in manufacturing and petrochemicals, ways to minimize dependence on crude oil, plans to increase productivity, the development of vocational education, as well as political and diplomatic integration.
Saudi Arabia, UAE, Determination Retreat, King Salman bin Abdulaziz, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan
Saudi-UAE “Determination Retreat” held in February (media office of Government of Dubai)