US investments in Egypt increase by 26%: Prime Minister Madbouly    Compact with Africa boosts G20 investments in the continent: Egypt's foreign minister    US officials knew of Ukraine's Trump anxiety    In Photos: 10th Int'l Theatre Without Fund Festival opens in Alexandria    51 brokerage companies granted licences to offer short-selling in Egypt's stock exchange    El Shams Housing to ink PPP deals with 4 contractors in Dec.    China is outspending the U.S. on 5G infrastructure, industry expert says    China makes unexpected short-term funding rate cut, the first since 2015    To prevent dementia, exercise is the answer – researchers say    Kuwait PM Jaber al-Mubarak declines reappointment as prime minister    Tennis: New Davis Cup format must be given chance to succeed, says Murray    Iran's Khamenei backs fuel price hike, blames ‘sabotage' for unrest    LIVE: Comoros v Egypt (2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifiers)    Netherlands back where they belong: Van Dijk    European shares climb as U.S.-China trade talks dominate sentiment    Hong Kong protesters pinned back on campus, violence escalating    In Photos: Cairo Circus promises impressive shows this season    Bank workers in Lebanon to remain on strike on Monday: Union    Apple Watch detects irregular heartbeats in US study    Egypt's El-Badry promises performance will improve after Salah's return    Saudi Aramco to sell small stake on Riyadh exchange    Egypt to host the second trilateral meeting over GERD in December    The Jobs with the best and worst heart health according to Bupa study    Children are nearing slavery due to digital development: Al-Azhar grand imam    Bridging East and West: Egyptian musicians Abdallah Abozekry and Ali Baghdady in Paris concerts    Six people killed, 16 injured in fuel pipeline explosion in Behaira    Liverpool's forward Salah out of Egypt games with ankle problem    GERD: An ‘adaptive' agreement    10 tips to have your 30s starting a lifelong success    Nike to investigate its Oregon Project following Mary Cain's NYT op-ed    ‘Shining' sequel ‘Doctor Sleep' targets $25 mln opening, has Stephen King's blessing    Sisi: Egypt believes in comprehensive approach to human rights    Egypt rejects politicised reports on human rights conditions – parliament    Egypt to vote on 3-month extension of state of emergency Monday    Al Pacino says follows this mantra on every acting job    Remembering Mustafa Mahmoud, philosopher of his time    Court sentences six to death, 41 to lifetime imprisonment violence related case    Trump says he would release Mideast peace plan after Israeli elections    ACWA Power compares 3 bids to supply production units for Luxor power station    What do you know about gold alloying?    NBE announces EGP 2.5m prizes for handball youth teams for their world achievements    Jennifer Lopez evokes Egyptian outrage post her North Coast performance    Al-Sisi honours Egypt's scholars on Science Day    IS claims responsibility for suicide bombing killing 63 in Afghan wedding    Political parties gear up for parliamentary, senate, local elections    Unprecedented Glory: Egypt win Men's U-19 World Handball Championship    12th National Egyptian Theatre Festival fuel up public theatre art scene    Ministry of Environment has a plan for "black clouds season"    







Thank you for reporting!
This image will be automatically disabled when it gets reported by several people.





Saudi visit showcases Putin's growing Middle East influence: Reuters report
Published in Ahram Online on 14 - 10 - 2019

Russian President Vladimir Putin visits Saudi Arabia on Monday for the first time in over a decade, seeking to capitalise on growing influence borne of military advances in Syria, strong ties with regional rivals and cooperation on energy policy.
Moscow accrued power in the Middle East in 2015 by sending troops to Syria, where it and Iran have been key backers of President Bashar al-Assad amid civil war, while the United States pulled back.
On the eve of Putin's trip, U.S. troops were evacuating northern Syria as their erstwhile Kurdish allies struck a deal with Assad's army aimed at halting a Turkish offensive.
Russia has also strengthened ties with both Sunni Muslim Saudi Arabia and Shia Iran, which are locked in a decades-old contest for influence that veered towards open conflict after a recent spate of attacks on oil assets in the Gulf that Riyadh and Washington blame on Tehran. Iran denies the charges.
Tensions with Iran, which is locked in several proxy wars with Saudi Arabia including in Yemen, have risen to new highs after Washington last year quit a 2015 international nuclear accord with Tehran and re-imposed sanctions.
Putin, accompanied on the trip by his energy minister and head of Russia's wealth fund, is due to hold talks with King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, with whom Putin says he has friendly relations.
The strengthened ties have seen non-OPEC Russia, once regarded as a rival in oil markets, join OPEC kingpin Saudi Arabia in forming an alliance known as OPEC+ to support crude prices by restraining output.
Ahead of the visit, Putin, who offered to provide Russian defense systems to the kingdom after Sept. 14 attacks on its oil facilities, said he could also play a positive role in easing tensions with Tehran as he had good ties with both sides.
Any progress on long-mulled Saudi plans to purchase the Russian S-400 surface-to-air missile systems would cause disquiet in Washington, which announced over the weekend it was sending around 3,000 troops and additional air defence systems to Saudi Arabia following last month's attack.
OIL AND INVESTMENTS
Asked about concerns Riyadh was cozying up to Moscow, Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir said he saw no contradiction.
"We don't believe that having close ties with Russia has any negative impact on our relationship with the United States," he told reporters on Sunday. "We believe that we can have strategic and strong ties with the United States while we develop our ties with Russia."
Russian and Saudi flags lined the streets of Riyadh ahead of Putin's one-day visit, which includes a performance by Russia's Tchaikovsky Symphony Orchestra. Putin then travels to the United Arab Emirates.
In meetings with Saudi leaders, the Russian president will discuss the OPEC+ pact, which has seen production cut by 1.2 million barrels per day since January.
A forum will convene 300 Saudi and Russian CEOs. The two sides are expected to sign more than $2 billion of deals, including a joint investment by state oil giant Saudi Aramco and Russia's RDIF sovereign wealth fund.
RDIF head Kirill Dmitriev said a number of Russian investors were interested in a planned initial public offering of Aramco, which could sell between 1% and 2% through a local listing as early as November ahead of a potential international offering.
Energy Minister Alexander Novak said Russia's Gazprom is interested in cooperating with Saudi firms on natural gas.
Moscow, the world's largest wheat exporter, made some progress in accessing the Saudi and Middle Eastern markets when the kingdom agreed in August to relax specifications for wheat imports, opening the door to Black Sea imports.
*This story was edited by Ahram Online


Clic here to read the story from its source.