Sushma Swaraj calls on Saudi King

Sushma Swaraj calls on Saudi King

Riyadh:In keeping with India’s growing ties with Saudi Arabia, Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Wednesday called on Saudi King Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud here on Wednesday.

“Steps to further intensify our strategic partnership in all sectors and to work together towards each other’s progress came up during (the) warm discussion,” Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted.

Earlier on Wednesday, Sushma Swaraj met her Saudi counterpart Adel Jubeir and discussed deepening of bilateral ties.

According to Raveesh Kumar, the discussions between Sushma Swaraj and Jubeir focused on enhancing trade and investment, energy, defence and security, culture and people-to-people ties.

“The two Foreign Ministers also discussed the regional and global situation,” the spokesperson said.

The India-Saudi Arabia relationship was elevated to that of a Strategic Partnership during the visit of then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to the Gulf kingdom in 2010.

Saudi Arabia is the fourth-largest trading partner for India with bilateral trade exceeding $25 billion in 2016-17.

As India’s largest supplier of crude oil, Saudi Arabia accounts for about 20 per cent of the total annual imports.

The Gulf nation is also home to around 3.2 million expatriate Indians, that includes a growing number of professionals, including doctors, software engineers and oil technologists.

Sushma Swaraj arrived here on Tuesday on a three-day visit, during the course of which she will participate at the inauguration of the prestigious national heritage and culture festival Al Janadriyah being held just outside Riyadh at which India is the guest of honour country.