Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Tuesday, November 13th, 2018

Saudi Sees Deals worth $50 Billion at Investment Conference despite Boycotts

Saudi Sees Deals worth $50 Billion at  Investment Conference despite Boycotts

RIYADH - Saudi Arabia was set to sign deals worth $50 billion on Tuesday at the opening of an investment conference despite being overshadowed by the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi which prompted a boycott by Western politicians, top world bankers and company executives.
Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih told a panel that the world’s largest oil exporter was passing through a “crisis of a sort” but would power ahead with economic diversification plans.
“Nobody in the kingdom can justify it (Khashoggi’s killing) or explain it,” he said.
Speaking at the opening session, Saudi businesswoman Lubna Olayan described the killing of the dissident Saudi journalist which has sparked a global outcry and strained Riyadh’s ties with the West as “alien to our culture”.
“It is natural that our thoughts tend to focus on recent events surrounding the death of Jamal Khashoggi ... may he rest in peace,” she said.
Hundreds of bankers and company executives joined officials at a palatial Riyadh hotel for the Future Investment Initiative. But while last year’s inaugural conference drew the global business elite, this year’s event has been marred by the pullout of more than two dozen high-level speakers. (Reuters)