Pakistan, Saudi Arabia to devise investment strategy

Pakistan and Saudi Arabia have agreed to devise a long-term strategy aimed at creating an atmosphere to promote bilateral investment and facilitation for investors of the two countries.

According to a statement issued by the Board of Investment (BoI) on Thursday, the pros and cons of the strategy were discussed in Tashkent during a meeting between Chairman of BoI, Azfar Ahsan and Saudi Minister for Investment, Khalid Al-Falih. During the meeting, Chief Executive Officer of National Companies Promotion Programme (NCPP), Badr Al-Badr and Saudi Ambassador in Uzbekistan were also present.

Both Pakistan and Saudi delegations are currently in Tashkent to participate in the Tashkent International Investment Forum which will conclude on March 26. NCPP’s mission is to help major Saudi companies expand their business internationally, or to launch internationally if they are not already active abroad.

NCPP will put into action multiple Saudi government resources to facilitate international business plans greatly improving their success and impact.

To initiate the strategy, the two sides agreed that shovel ready projects including the expansion project of Pakistan refinery will be evaluated by the Saudi government, and the understanding developed is that Saudi Aramco will undertake preferred projects in the oil refinery sector in Pakistan.

The Saudi investment minister emphasized the need for greater mutual investments in different fields and proposed to form a joint team comprising Board of Investment and the National Companies Promotion Programme (NCPP) to finalize investment projects in Pakistan while appreciating the initiatives of the Pakistan government to facilitate investment in the country.

Mr Khalid Al-Falih invited a team of BoI to visit Saudi Arabia along with concerned stakeholders to market investment projects from public and private sectors, and said he will visit Islamabad soon to provide an impetus to bilateral economic cooperation between the two brotherly countries.

The two sides highlighted the deep-rooted bilateral ties and cordial relationship between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, and underscored the need for increased collaboration and investment in various sectors and vowed to strengthen economic and business ties.

The potential areas of investment identified during the meeting include agriculture, food processing, mining, renewable energy, refinery, petro-chemicals and information technology

The BoI chairman presented a detailed briefing to the Saudi investment minister about the investment regime in the country, and shared that Pakistan is taking measures to increase both savings and investment to augment the employment generating ability of the economy as well as to raise resource availability for investment.

Ghulam Abbas
Ghulam Abbas
The writer is a member of the staff at the Islamabad Bureau. He can be reached at [email protected]


  1. Unfortunate that an event organizer and a struggling lobbyist is picked to lead board of investment to sit in front of a highly seasoned minister of investment of Saudi Arabia. No wonder no one takes Pakistan seriously as an investment destination.

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