Saudi Arabia stops Canada trade and investment
OREANDA-NEWS The Saudi foreign Ministry announced the suspension of "all new business and investment operations" with Canada. This information was in report of Saudi Press Agency.
Canada's Ambassador to Saudi Arabia was given 24 hours to leave the country. In addition, the Saudis freeze any new trade agreements and investments with Canada, reserving the right to take other measures.
Saudi Arabia detained prominent human rights defenders Samar Badawi and Nassim al-Sadah on 2 August, advocating for women's rights to drive cars and the abolition of guardianship and escort for women. After their arrest, the middle East division of Human Rights Watch concluded that "the Saudi authorities perceive any peaceful disagreement, whether in the past or the present, as a threat to their authoritarian regime." Since the end of may, more than 10 human rights defenders have been arrested in the Kingdom.
In addition, the Saudis refuse new trade relations with Canada. This reaction was caused by the position of Canada on the detention of human rights defenders in Saudi Arabia. The Ministry of foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia withdraws its Ambassador from Canada. The Ambassador of Canada to Riyadh, respectively, declared persona non grata.
The TV channel notes that such a reaction of the Saudi authorities caused the statement of the canadian foreign Ministry about "civil activists". On Friday, August 3, the canadian foreign Ministry on Twitter expressed " serious concern about the arrests of civil society activists and women's rights activists in Saudi Arabia." "We call on the Saudi authorities to immediately release them and the rest of the peace fighters for human rights," the canadian Ministry said in a tweet.
In 2016, 45% of canadian exports to Saudi Arabia accounted for tanks, armored vehicles and spare parts, with 98% of imports accounted for crude oil and copper ores. Saudi Arabia supplies oil to the Irving refinery in St. John, in the province of new Brunswick. In 2018, Canada's exports to Saudi Arabia amounted to $ 1.4 billion, imports - $2 billion.
Since 2006, Saudi Arabia has invested about $6 billion in canadian business. These investments include the purchase of a controlling stake in the canadian grain trader CWB by a joint venture of the Saudi Arabian state company Saudi Agricultural Livestock Investment Company and the canadian grain company Bunge Ltd – G3 Global Grain Group.
In 2014, the canadian division of the American concern General Dynamics Corp won a contract for $13 billion production of light-armored cars for Saudi Arabia. Ottawa noted that it was the largest export production in Canada's history.