Dubai: A record investment package being prepared by Saudi Arabia for Pakistan will likely provide welcome relief for its cash-strapped Muslim ally, while also addressing regional geopolitical challenges, analysts say. At the heart of the investment is a reported USD 10 billion refinery and oil complex in the strategic Gwadar Port on the Arabian Sea, the ultimate destination for the massive multi-billion dollar China Pakistan Economic Corridor, which lies not far from the Indo-Iranian port of Chabahar.
Two Saudi sources have confirmed to AFP that heir apparent to the Gulf kingdom’s throne, Crown Prince Salman, will visit Islamabad shortly, without giving a date. And a number of major investment deals are expected to be signed during a visit, officials from both countries have told AFP.
Riyadh and Islamabad, decades-old allies, have been involved for months in talks to hammer out details of the deals in time for the high-profile visit. “The outcome of the talks so far has been very positive and this is going to be one of the biggest-ever Saudi investments in Pakistan,” a Pakistani senior finance ministry official said “We hope that an agreement to this effect will be signed during the upcoming visit of the Saudi crown prince to Pakistan,” said the official, requesting anonymity.