Mohammed bin Salman, crown prince of Saudi Arabia who visited Pakistan last week has promised investment of around $20 billion to help Pakistan strengthen its economy. This visit was part of a tour of Asia by the crown prince to look for investment resources that go beyond oil. Pakistan in recent years is finding it hard to manage its balance of payments situation and is seeking help of friendly nations for support. A part of this investment will be for development of an oil refinery of around$8 billion at the port city of Gwadar.
Both nations have also signed on several small and large provisional agreements in the sectors of energy, petrochemicals and mining sector. The crown prince said this investment is first of many to come which will be done for the benefit of both nations. Due to its foreign reserves at just $8 billion Pakistan is staring at a payments crisis situation and is desperate for cash. It is seeking help from friendly nations to cut down the bailout package that it will require from IMF to tide over the crisis. This is the 13th bailout that Pakistan is seeking since 1980 when Saudi Arabia gave it $6 billion.
After the short visit to Pakistan the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Bin Salman is scheduled to make a stop-over at India after which he will go to China towards the weekend. The prince is trying to reinstate is image as a statesman on the international stage after the furor created due to murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at Istanbul. The current tour is being viewed as an attempt to bolster relationships with old allies as he gives investment doles to them. Though Pakistan will benefits from the investment given by Saudi the nation also holds strategic importance as both have long military relationships.