We show you our most important and recent visitors news details 'Despite pandemic, Saudi-French ties kept strengthening in all sectors' in the following article
Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Today, for the second consecutive year, we are celebrating the French national day in an exceptional context. However, although the pandemic remains a reality, with the appearance of new variants, our countries have learned to live with it and significant progress has been made. In France as well as in Saudi Arabia, the vaccination campaign has progressed well and gives hope for a return to normality. France has already fully resumed issuing Schengen visas to Saudi citizens and the Kingdom is now on the green list of countries considered to have a low risk of infection.
I was pleased to notice that for many Saudis, their first trip since the beginning of the crisis will be to France. This friendship reflects the special relationship that has united France and Saudi Arabia for several decades and which has gained new momentum in recent years, notably with the conclusion of a strategic partnership between our two countries, during the visit of Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman to Paris in April 2018. Since then, and despite the pandemic, ties have only kept strengthening in all sectors.
First, at the political level, our two countries share a broad convergence of views on regional crises. However, our cooperation is no longer restricted to the regional issues. Under the Saudi presidency of the G20, which the Kingdom successfully led despite the exceptional context, our dialogue has expanded to include major international and cross-cutting issues such as support to the African continent, the establishment of a mechanism for the equitable distribution of vaccines, and the fight against climate change.
In the economic field too, opportunities have multiplied thanks to the Vision 2030. It is a fact that Saudi Arabia is attracting more and more investors who are willing to participate in the country's economic development, among whom are many French. Similarly, the cooperation prospects in this sector with France, which has been ranked first in Europe in terms of welcoming foreign investments for the third consecutive year, are promising.
I cannot, nevertheless, overlook our exceptional cooperation in the field of culture, in all its forms. Since fall 2019, Saudi Arabia has introduced a tourism visa that has allowed the whole world to discover, in wonder, the natural, historical and archaeological treasures that the Kingdom holds. I think of course of the Al-Ula region, at the valorization of which France participates through AFALULA, but also of the Red Sea coast, the green mountains of Assir, the Farasan Islands and so on. Here too, Saudi Arabia can count on the expertise and know-how of France, the world's leading tourist destination.
I also want young Saudis to have the opportunity to study in France, in French or English, so that they can return with the skills they have acquired and serve their country and serve as a bridge, not only between France and Saudi Arabia, but also between Europe and the Arab world.
Long live France! Long live Saudi Arabia! Long live the Franco-Saudi friendship!
* Word of the French Ambassador to the Kingdom on the occasion of the French National day (14th of July 2021)
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