New Delhi: At the invitation of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, HRH Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Vice President of the Council of Ministers and Minister of Defence of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was paid his first State visit to India on February 19-20, 2019. He was accompanied by a high-level delegation, including Ministers, senior officials and leading Saudi businessmen.
During the forthcoming visit, HRH the Crown Prince of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was called on Hon’ble President and Hon’ble Vice President, and hold bilateral talks with Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi on wide range of issues of mutual interest. The visit followed the highly successful visit of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi to Saudi Arabia in April 2016, during which the two countries agreed to further elevate existing strategic partnership.
India and Saudi Arabia have historically enjoyed close and friendly relations anchored in mutually beneficial partnership and extensive people to people contacts. In recent years, there has been significant progress in bilateral cooperation in key areas of mutual interest, including energy security, trade & investment, infrastructure, defence and security.
Our bilateral trade was US$ 27.48 billion during the last financial year 2017-18, making Saudi Arabia our 4th largest trading partner (Bilateral trade during April – November 2018 reached USD 23.24 billion). Saudi Arabia contributes significantly to our energy security needs by supplying about 20% of crude requirements to India. Recently, Saudi ARAMCO in partnership with ADNOC of UAE has entered into a Joint Venture for US$ 44 billion worth Ratnagiri Refinery and Petro-Chemical project Ltd.
About 2.7 million strong and vibrant Indian community forms the largest expatriate group in Saudi Arabia. Their positive and highly-appreciated contribution to the development of their host country has been an important anchor of our excellent bilateral engagement. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia also facilitates Hajj pilgrimage to over 1,75,000 Indians every year.