Saudi crown prince greenlights MoU with Pakistan on energy

MBS also approves cooperation agreement with Pakistan's military intelligence agency to combat terrorism

Web Desk
Saudi Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman (centre) chairs a cabinet meeting on May 21, 2024. — Saudi Press Agency  

In a major development, Saudi Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) on Tuesday gave the nod to the draft for a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for bolstering cooperation in the energy sector.

The development came two days after Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ishaq Dar and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia Prince Faisal bin Farhan bin Abdullah reviewed preparations for the visit of the crown prince to Pakistan.

According to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), the decision was made during the cabinet meeting held with Prime Minister MBS in the chair.

The cabinet meeting authorised the “minister of energy, or a deputy, to discuss and sign with the Pakistani side a draft memorandum of understanding for cooperation in the field of energy".

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif revealed that areas of cooperation with the kingdom had been identified.

“We have identified areas of mutual cooperation, both at the level of government-to-government and business-to-business and that has been clearly identified. We now have a clear-cut way forward."

The prime minister had highlighted that both countries will work on mutual cooperation, investments in the field of mines and minerals as well as renewable energy, among other things.

The Saudi press agencies further said that the cabinet meeting also approved a cooperation agreement between the Presidency of State Security in the Kingdom and the military intelligence agency in Pakistan to combat terrorism and its financing.

It is pertinent to mention here that Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Syed Asim Munir had visited Riyadh on an official visit in March and called on MBS.

During the meeting, wide-ranging issues of mutual interest, including regional peace and security, bilateral defence and security cooperation came under discussion. 

Later, Saudi Ambassador to Pakistan Nawaf bin Saeed Al Maliki had termed the army chief’s visit to the kingdom highly productive, significant and successful.

It is worth mentioning here that officials in Riyadh and Islamabad are holding consultations on the crown prince’s Pakistan visit.

The clarification from the government sources was issued after reports emerged that the high-profile visit had been delayed.

According to the sources, the final date for the MBS’s visit has not been decided yet and Deputy PM is also in contact with the Saudi authorities in this regard.