Greece and Saudi Arabia have signed a memorandum of understanding for cooperation in several areas related to the energy sector during the official visit of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz to Athens.
The MoU was signed by Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman bin Abdulaziz, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy, and Nikos Dendias, the minister of foreign affairs of Greece.
The memorandum sets a framework for cooperation between the two countries that includes the fields of renewable energy, electrical interconnection, exportation of electricity to Greece and Europe, the transportation of clean hydrogen to Europe, energy efficiency, and the oil, gas, and petrochemical industry.
The memorandum also includes cooperation in the field of promoting digital transformation and innovation in the fields of energy, including cyber security and working to develop qualitative partnerships between the two parties to localize materials, products, and services related to all energy sectors and their associated supply chains and technologies.
Within the framework of this memorandum, joint research in the fields of energy with universities and research centers among other institutions will be conducted, and working sessions, panel discussions, seminars, and multilateral conferences will be organized. Additionally, there will be a focus on building human capacities through training and exchanging experiences and information related to various energy fields.
Leaders emphasize strong relations between Greece and Saudi Arabia
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who is visiting Greece on Tuesday, met with Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and emphasized the strong relations between the two countries.
The Athens visit is the Saudi leader’s first trip to a European Union nation since the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.
The Saudi prince pointed out that his visit is a historic opportunity for the two countries and will lead to agreements in the fields of energy, renewables, and communications.
“We are also interested in hydrogen and how to turn Greece into a hub for Europe in terms of hydrogen, which is something that will change the parameters for both countries,” he noted.
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince to Greece's Prime Minister:
"I promised you that when I come to Greece I will not come empty handed. We have a lot of stuff that are going to be game changer for both of countries and also for the whole region". pic.twitter.com/sbB6nJ1eFa
— e-Αmyna (@e_amyna) July 26, 2022
According to Greek government sources, the meeting with Mitsotakis took place in a good climate, indicative of the strong interest of both sides in further deepening the already close bilateral relations and expanding the dynamically developing Greek-Saudi cooperation, which was also confirmed during Mitsotakis’ visit in Riyadh in October 2021.
The two leaders signed an agreement setting up a Supreme Strategic Cooperation Council, which consolidates the strategic relationship of the two countries and the promotion of bilateral cooperation in all areas of mutual interest.
The Prime Minister underlined the importance of the ECM (East to Med Data Corridor) project, the undersea and terrestrial data transmission cable system that will connect Europe with Asia via Greece and Saudi Arabia and render Greece a data entry gateway to the EU while simultaneously connecting it to the Middle East and Asia.
He also had the opportunity to present to the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia the initiatives that Greece has undertaken in order to become an energy hub that connects the wider region with European markets.
In this context, the two leaders discussed the prospects of cooperation between the two countries in the field of “green energy,” as well as the possibilities of transferring electricity from Saudi Arabia to Europe through Greece, which can become the “bridge” between the Middle East and Europe.
Mitsotakis referenced the new investment opportunities that Greece offers in terms of tourism infrastructure, the real estate market, maritime transport, and the logistics sector while he emphasized the significant investment potential in port infrastructure and the land transport network in Alexandroupolis.