Chancellor Angela Merkel visits Saudi Arabia

Chancellor Merkel arriving in Jeddah Enlarge image Chancellor Merkel arriving in Jeddah on 30 April 2017 (© German Embassy, Alia Alsoud)

Federal Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel visited Jeddah on April 30th and May 1st.
The Chancellor held talks with His Majesty the King, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in which she welcomed Saudi efforts to reform and re-invent their economic and societal model in the framework of Vision 2030.

They also talked about  current crises and important developments in the region such as the situation in Syria and Yemen. The leaders agreed that there is a need for peaceful and political solutions to these crises. They also reinforced the partnership of both countries in combatting terrorism, not only terrorist organisations like ISIS, but also the root causes of terrorism.

Another important theme of the visit was to prepare the agenda of the upcoming G-20 Summit in Hamburg on July 7th and 8th, which will be the highlight of Germany’s current Presidency of the G-20 group and in which Saudi Arabia will participate at the highest level.

Chancellor Merkel and King Salman bin Abdulaziz Enlarge image Chancellor Merkel and King Salman bin Abdulaziz on 30 April 2017 in Jeddah (© picture-alliance, dpa)

The Chancellor was also accompanied by a high-ranking business delegation which included the CEOs of some of the most renowned German companies such as Siemens, SAP, Lufthansa, Deutsche Bahn and Bilfinger.

During the visit to Al Salam Palace, a total of 6 MoUs were signed:  three in the private sector (two by Siemens and one by SAP), one between the Saudi Ministry of Defense and  the German MoD on the future training of Saudi cadets in military academies in Germany, one on the broadening of the cooperation of Saudi Arabia and the German Federal Police, especially in the fields of Air security and transport security and one on cooperation on development aid to Mali and Niger.
The German companies expressed their eagerness to participate in the realization of Vision2030, providing tailor-made solutions from their rich range of products. The software company SAP alone will invest 285 million SAR in support of Vision2030, mostly for the modernization of digital infrastructure.