REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA -- A program called Saudi Vision 2030 offers opportunities to Indonesian entrepreneurs to expand their businesses to Saudi Arabia, an Indonesian government official said here Friday.
"Saudi Arabia expects the program can wean the country away from its dependence on the energy sector," Head of Research and Policy Development for Asia-Pacific and African regions at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mohamad, Hery Saripudin, who is also a Consul-General candidate of the Republic of Indonesia in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia said.
Saudi Arabia is now intensively diversifying the country's economic sector beyond energy, he added. There are two reasons why Saudi Arabia strives to free itself from dependence on the energy sector that have been the mainstay of the country, according to him.
Firstly, the fall in world oil prices after the revocation of sanctions by the Western countries against Iran allows the country to freely distribute oil to the international market. Secondly, the interest of Saudi Arabia to continue funding the leadership in the Middle East region increases spending in the state budget.
"Saudi Arabia needs a huge budget so it must diversify its economic resources, by privatization of strategic sectors, developing property, and so on. This is an opportunity for Indonesian businessmen to take part in it," he said.
The Middle East is a strategic region because of the large number of Indonesians living there, Hery added. In addition, issues such as the Palestine and Sunni-Shiah conflicts frequently touch the Indonesians, who are mostly Muslims.
A number of tasks has been awaiting him in Jeddah, such as preserving national sovereignty, protecting and serving Indonesians, and building economic diplomacy and Indonesia's leadership in multilateral organizations, among others, Hery said.