Rarotonga, Cook Islands, 18 May 2023 - The Cook Islands Government will this week host a technical visit to Rarotonga by a delegation from the Saudi Development Fund (SDF).
This is the first official delegation from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to visit the Cook Islands since an initial meeting with Prime Minister the Hon. Mark Brown in February in Nadi, Fiji, and the formalisation of diplomatic relations between both countries on 12 April.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration (MFAI) Secretary Tepaeru Herrmann, who is presently in Hiroshima, Japan, supporting Prime Minister Brown's attendance at the Group of Seven (G7) Summit, welcomes the technical visit by the SDF commending the proactive approach taken by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to engage with the Cook Islands and the Pacific in recent months.
"Saudi Arabia, and the Gulf countries more broadly, have bucked the trend of economic recovery from COVID-19, with Saudi Arabia being amongst the fastest-growing economies, outperforming the major developed economies of the G7 and others like China, India, and Indonesia over the last two years," said Secretary Herrmann.
"Significantly for the Cook Islands and the Pacific, Saudi Arabia is in a strong fiscal position and actively looking globally for economic diversification projects through its ambitious Vision 2030 strategy. We, therefore, look forward to exploring how we might partner with Saudi Arabia to support our economic recovery aspirations in the months ahead."