The following article was contrbited to The Korea Post media by the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Seoul for publication on the occasion of the National Day of Saudia Arabia on Sept. 23, 2020.—Ed.
The twenty-third day of September 1932 was a glorious day in our history where the founding King His Majesty Abdul Aziz bin Abdul Rahman Al Saud had unified the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. With such precious national occasion every year, we celebrate and remember with pride, appreciation and dignity, the efforts and sacrifices made by the founding King and his sons, the Kings who came after him, and who followed his approach in building, developing and serving the Kingdom and its people.
This year we celebrate the 90th Anniversary, while the Kingdom continues the process of development and modernization in all fields, under the leadership of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, and the trustworthy Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud. The Kingdom is experiencing a qualitative renaissance despite regional and international developments and challenges.
In recognition of the leadership's keenness to invest all national resources to serve the country and its citizens, the Kingdom's "Vision 2030" was announced, with its national contents, development and future plans, to diversify sources of income, increase efficiency of government performance, and to modernize regulations and administrative structure. Marking the beginning of a new phase of development and the hard work for better future, “Vision 2030” aims to keep up with developed countries, to achieve a comprehensive development, to employ the Kingdom's potentials and its energy, by taking advantage of the Kingdom's strategic location, while adhering to the genuine faith of Islam and preserving the genuineness of our society and its principles.
The Kingdom plays a key role in maintaining security and stability in the region, and it enjoys a regional, Arab, Islamic and international status, while playing an active and influential role in international decision-making, and its continuous pursuit for international peace and security.
Moreover, the Kingdom is one of the largest countries supporting the humanitarian and relief work in the world, aware of the importance of alleviating human suffering and ensuring a decent life for those who are vulnerable and needy. The foreign aid provided by the Kingdom during the last two decades amounted to more than 84.7 billion US dollars.
It should be noted that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has assumed presidency of the G20 earlier this year. The 2020 G20 Presidency focusses discussions, forums, working groups and Ministerial Meetings under the theme of: Realizing Opportunities of the 21st Century for All.
The Kingdom has a unique position, as it stands at the crossroads of three continents and at the intersection of emerging and developed markets. The Kingdom has one of the youngest populations of any G20 country and is undertaking a major social and economic transformation, under the Saudi Vision 2030. The Kingdom is implementing a wide range of reforms to lift economic growth, diversify its economy, empower women and youth, promote small and medium-sized enterprises, pursue more quality public private partnerships, improve government effectiveness, and foster competitiveness. This means that the G20 agenda has a strong echo in the daily lives of the people in the Kingdom.
Taking this opportunity, I would like to praise the strategic, friendly, and cooperative relations between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of Korea, which dates back to 1962. Through a long history, the two countries have witnessed a qualitative leap and great development in many fields, including politics, military, economy, education, culture, and health.
In June 2019, His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, paid a historical state visit to the Republic of Korea. Crown Prince Mohammed and President Moon Jae-in stressed the importance of Saudi-Korea relations and showed high expectations toward economic projects between the two countries and Seoul's involvement in Saudi's Vision 2030 program.
During his two-day visit, the Crown Prince showed his keen interest in Korean companies by meeting with chiefs of Korea's top conglomerates – Hyundai Motor Group, LG Group, Samsung Group and SK Group.
The Crown Prince described ties with Korea as a "relationship of brotherhood," emphasizing that Korea is a strategic partner of the Kingdom.
The two countries signed memorandums of understanding on increasing cooperation between the governments and private sectors, which will open broader chance of cooperation.
The Saudi-Korean bilateral relations are a model of relations among nations, where they have often coincided with common positions on various international events, bilateral coordination, mutual understanding and mutual support in international bodies and organizations.
Both leaders have the desire to strengthening relations and developing cooperation to achieve, promote and serve the common interests of both countries and their peoples and to contribute to regional security, stability and world peace.
I sincerely wish the two countries and the two friendly peoples continued prosperity, security and stability.