U.S.-Saudi Business Council President and CEO H. Delano Roosevelt recently sat down with award-winning journalist Frank Kane of Arab News on “Frankly Speaking,” a video interview series with leading policymakers and businesspeople. They began the segment by speaking about the current state of the U.S.-Saudi business environment and the enduring relationship between the United States and the Kingdom, which started 75 years ago with a meeting on the U.S.S. Quincy between H.R.H. King Abdul Aziz Al Saud and Mr. Roosevelt’s grandfather, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Mr. Roosevelt spoke warmly about his own experiences living, working, and enjoying his life in the Kingdom and stressed the importance of developing personal relationships in Saudi culture.
Mr. Roosevelt praised Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 progress and noted its importance in bettering the lives of the Saudi people. He further explained the draw for U.S. companies to invest in Saudi Arabia, saying that the country’s rapidly diversifying and growing economy, fueled by a favorable, overhauled regulatory environment, a highly educated workforce, and modern infrastructure, come together to create a favorable investment environment for any U.S. business ready to expand overseas. The Saudi government and Saudi companies are interested in working with U.S. partners to establish lasting relationships, as opposed to just “phoning in your business,” as Mr. Roosevelt described, and that these types of partnerships will benefit U.S. companies interested in getting established in Saudi Arabia’s emerging industries.
Sectors like sustainability, renewable energy, and desalination are being revolutionized by Saudi companies and universities, with government support, and any U.S. company at the forefront of the global energy transition is welcome to explore partnerships in Saudi Arabia. As Mr. Roosevelt concluded, “Saudi Arabia has taken this whole world of sustainability and green production to heart. They have adopted it; they have accepted it and they’re embracing it.”
View the whole interview below: