Trump welcomes Saudi Prince, says Saudi Arabia "very wealthy"
By Lalit K Jha
Washington, Mar 20 (PTI) Saudi Arabia is a "very wealthy" nation and will hopefully share some of its wealth with the US by making investments in America, President Donald Trump said today as he welcomed the oil-rich country's Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman to the White House.
Prince Salman, who is visiting the US for the first time after consolidating his influence in the Gulf kingdom last year, will be on a two-week tour to America.
He unveiled his ambitious plan "Vision 2030" last year which aims to wean Saudi Arabia off its dependence on oil and modernise its economy by building up diverse industries, including tourism.
"Saudi Arabia is a very wealthy nation, and they're going to give the United States some of that wealth hopefully, in the form of jobs and in the form of the purchase of the finest military equipment anywhere in the world. There's nobody even close," Trump told reporter in a brief Oval Office appearance with the 32-year-old Crown Prince.
"When it comes to the missiles and the planes and all of the military equipment, there is nobody that even comes close to us in terms of technology and the quality of the equipment. And Saudi Arabia appreciates that," he said, adding that they have done tests of everything.
Trump noted that when he was in Riyadh last May the Saudis had promised a USD 400 billion for the purchase of US equipment.
"The relationship is probably the strongest it's ever been. We understand each other. Mohammad agreed. We believe the same. We believe that the opportunities are huge," he said.
"We are trying also to tackle new opportunities, and to prepare the visit of His Majesty as soon as possible with the new waves of opportunities in different area, and we believe we can do a lot of great things together," said the Crown Prince.
He recently warned that if Iran gets nuclear bomb, Saudi Arabia will follow suit.
Trump was non-committal on the future of the Iranian nuclear deal.
"Well, we're going to see what happens. The Iran deal is coming up. It's probably another month or so, and you're going to see what I do," Trump told reporters without elaborating.
"But Iran has not been treating that part of the world or the world itself appropriately. A lot of bad things are happening in Iran. The deal is coming up in one month, and you will see what happens," he said. PTI LKJ MRJ MRJ
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