The United Bank for Africa Plc and the Saudi Export-Import Bank have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to foster economic cooperation and trade relations.
According to a statement from the lender, the MoU was signed on the sidelines of the Saudi-African Summit in Saudi Arabia on Thursday.
It stated that the partnership between the bank and Saudi EXIM Bank would be focused on promoting trade through the export of goods and services between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the African markets.
Commenting on the partnership, UBA’s Chief Executive Officer, Oliver Alawuba, said, “We are happy to join hands with Saudi EXIM Bank in a partnership that holds great promise for businesses and economies in both regions. This agreement will not only facilitate the export of goods and services but also solidify our commitment to intercontinental business relationships and contribute to the development of the African economy.
“This relationship is particularly promising, considering that Saudi Arabia is deliberate in deepening economic cooperation with Africa and UBA has a presence in 20 African countries, providing the necessary vehicle for deepening this engagement. The partnership also expands our access to Asia and the Middle East, where the bank recently opened a subsidiary in Dubai.”
In his comment, the CEO of Saudi EXIM, Saad Al-Khalb, said, “By uniting our strengths, we are setting in motion a dynamic platform that will propel the export of innovative Saudi goods and services, catalyse industrial growth, and magnify our global footprint across the rich tapestry of African economies.
“This, we believe, will not only augment Saudi Arabia’s export diversification but also contribute significantly to the socio-economic fabric of the African nations, we will serve together.”
Saudi EXIM was established in 2020 with the aim of promoting Saudi non-oil exports and strengthening its competitiveness across various sectors in global markets.
Apart from collaboration on trade, it disclosed that both institutions would also ensure sustained participation in the development of the African economy through intercontinental business relationships that will be facilitated by the new partnership.
“The MoU will also work towards supporting joint projects and collaboration involving the export of goods and services from Saudi Arabia and exploring opportunities to co-finance, co-insure, co-guarantee, and reinsurance projects jointly undertaken by companies from both regions,” the statement read.
It added that the partnership would also facilitate the exchange of information and know-how in the field of export credit policies and practices, and the sharing of experiences and best practices through meetings, conferences, seminars, and workshops.
It added that the MoU would also enable the two banks to carry out staff exchanges.