The Slovenia Times

Slovenia hoping to boost exports to Saudi Arabia

The Slovenian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Federation of Saudi Chambers sign an agreement on the establishment of a Saudi-Slovenian Business Club. Photo: Boštjan Podlogar/STA

Slovenia and Saudi Arabia have long been nurturing a trade partnership, but with imports from the Gulf country, mostly petroleum products, outweighing exports by a factor of almost ten, Slovenia wants to tip the balance somewhat in the other direction.

Cooperation between the countries is improving, but the trade in goods is unbalanced and new opportunities to increase exports to Saudi Arabia must be created, Slovenian Economy Minister Matjaž Han said as he hosted his Saudi counterpart Faisal bin Fadhil Alibrahim in Ljubljana on 27 September.

Saudi Arabia is Slovenia's most important trading partner in the Gulf. In 2022, Slovenian exports of goods to Saudi Arabia reached €128.4 million, up 27% year-on-year, while imports rose by 280% to €1.2 billion, mostly on account of petroleum products.

In his meeting with bin Fadhil Alibrahim, Han highlighted Slovenia's geostrategic position, security and political stability, as well as a highly educated workforce.

Moreover, Slovenia is preparing measures to sharpen its competitive edge, wanting to restructure traditional industry into an industry of knowledge and innovation, said Han, who sees possibilities for improving bilateral cooperation mainly through the use of high technology.

"Slovenia is strong in ... robotics, and we have excellent results in many scientific and technological fields, such as physics, materials, biochemistry, and recently also in fields that deal with climate change," Han said.

To spur cooperation further, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia (GZS) and the Federation of Saudi Chambers signed an agreement on the establishment of a Saudi-Slovenian Business Club at the sidelines of the meeting, which was also accompanied by a business forum.


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