President Muhammadu Buhari has accepted an invitation from the Saudi Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, for the establishment of Nigeria- Saudi Council.
The decision was the highpoint of a bilateral meeting between President Buhari and the Crown Prince which took place on the margins of the Future Investment Initiative (FII) conference.
The meeting was initially scheduled to hold in the office of the Crown Prince. but out of courtesy and respect for the Nigerian leader, Prince Salman insisted that he would meet with President Buhari in his hotel room at The Ritz Carlton, Riyadh.
Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to the President
On Media and Publicity said in a statement yesterday that the establishment of the joint council was aimed at promoting investments and enhancing relations between both countries.
The council will be made up of government officials and business leaders from both countries and the areas of focus are: economic growth and development, investments in oil and non-oil sectors, and security cooperation.
President Buhari and the Crown Prince agreed that the first assignment for the council is to establish a legal and operational framework that will facilitate investments beneficial to both countries.
The council will be established in the next two months; while meetings will be held twice every year.
It was also agreed that leaders of both countries, at the highest level, will meet at least once every year to review the progress of the joint council and ensure closer collaboration on issues of mutual interest.
The agreement is to ensure that relations between both countries remain active.
President Buhari thanked the Crown Prince for the Kingdom’s interest in investing in Nigeria and the initiative to establish the Council which would form the foundation for a stronger Nigeria-Saudi relationship.
Buhari, who spoke on regional and international issues, shared the view of the Crown Prince that with the collapse of ISIS in Iraq and Syria, the next frontier for terrorism is the Sahel region.
He hailed the concern by the Saudi authorities to keep the issue of the security situation in Sahel region on the front burner.
Earlier, the Saudi Crown Prince had noted that the security challenges in the Sahel should be seen as a global issue.
“Saudi Arabia is prepared to participate in the engagement and sensitisation of the whole world to the problems in sub-Saharan Africa,” he said.