A large delegation of Somali government ministers travelled to Saudi Arabia to discuss development and investment projects with Saudi counterparts.
The ministers were lead by Gamal Hassan, the Minister for Planning, Investment and Economic Development and was joined by the Minister of Finance, Minister of Ports and Marine Transport, Minister of Defence and the Minister of Agriculture
Sources say that among the ambitious development plans to be discussed is the construction of an international airport.
Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo met with King Salman at his Al-Yamamah palace on Feb. 23, his first foreign trip since his election just two weeks prior.
During the meeting the two leaders were said to discuss bilateral cooperation between the two Arab League countries as well as investment and key infrastructure development projects. oil rich Saudi Arabia promised a major cash injection into the Somali economy to the tune of USD $4 billion.
The visit comes on the heels of a major diplomatic crisis in the gulf as Saudi Arabia and it’s allies cut ties with Qatar.
Somalia, which maintains strong relations with the two gulf countries, has officially maintained a neutral position on the issue according to a Wednesday press release from the Ministry of Foreign affairs .
“The Federal Republic of Somalia deeply concerned about the diplomatic row between the brotherly Arab countries” the statement goes on to say that “Somalia calls to all countries involved to settle their differences through dialogue ans within the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation” .